Lucara stated the delay was due primarily to covid-19 associated delays to begin shaft pre-sinking, and extra deliberate time for improvement.
Complete capex for the enlargement, together with contingency, has elevated by 4% to $534 million from $514 million, which the corporate attributed to the necessity to enlarge the manufacturing shaft’s diameter and extra mine improvement.
The corporate famous it was making headway in the direction of a 2026 begin to underground manufacturing, including that there might not be “materials variances” between the 2019 feasibility examine and the present execution plan.
Lucara secured in July $220 million in credit-approved commitments for senior debt services for the venture. Three days later, it closed a C$41.4 million (about $33.1m) fairness financing, leaving $314 million (now $334m) the corporate stated would fund on its personal.
The Vancouver-based diamond miner stated it spent $51.4 million on venture execution actions by way of 2020 till the tip June and it plans to speculate different $120 million this yr.
“Utilizing conservative diamond worth assumptions, the venture delivers sturdy economics projected to pay again capital in beneath three years and add roughly $4 billion in extra revenues from an prolonged mine life to at the very least 2040,” chief govt Eira Thomas stated in an announcement on Wednesday.
The Karowe mine, which produces an average of 300,000 high-value carats each year, started business operations in 2012 and has already develop into the one diamond operation in recorded historical past to have yielded two 1,000+ carat stones — the 1,758 carat Sewelô in 2019 and the 1,109 carat Lesedi La Rona in 2015, which offered for $53 million.
Past Sewelô, the one bigger diamond ever unearthed is the three,106-carat Cullinan Diamond, found in South Africa in 1905. The Cullinan was later reduce into smaller stones, a few of which now type a part of British royal household’s crown jewels.
Lucara reported late Tuesday results for the second quarter, which present the corporate is in much better form than in the identical interval final yr, as demand for polished stones drove up tough costs.
The corporate reported web earnings of $6 million for the three months ended on June 30, in comparison with a lack of $13.9 million final yr and up from $3.4 million in the earlier quarter.
Income from Karowe soared to $46.3 million from $7.5 million a yr in the past and whereas gross sales quantity remained flat at 68,961 carats, the common worth jumped to $671 per carat, versus $109 in the identical interval of 2020.
Gross sales by way of its Clara platform, which matches patrons with the particular diamonds they want, have been up 38% quarter-on-quarter, with transaction values of $8.3 million over six gross sales.
Lucara additionally stated it expects income of $180 million to $210 million for the complete yr from the sale of between 350,000 and 390,000 carats.
Output from Karowe might be between 340,000 and 370,000 carats for the yr, Lucara added.