Gold Fields
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Certain forward looking statements

This report contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Act, and Section 21E of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act, with respect to Gold Fields' financial condition, results of operations, business strategies, operating efficiencies, competitive position, growth opportunities for existing services, plans and objectives of management, markets for stock and other matters. Such forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology, including the terms "believes", "estimates", "plans", "anticipates", "aims", "continues", "expects", "hopes", "may", "will", "would" or "could" or, in each case, their negative or other various or comparable terminology.

These forward-looking statements, including, among others, those relating to the future business prospects, revenues and income of Gold Fields, wherever they may occur in this report, are necessarily estimates reflecting the best judgment of the senior management of Gold Fields and involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. As a consequence, these forward-looking statements should be considered in light of various important factors, including those set forth in this report. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from estimates or projections contained in the forward-looking statements include, without limitation: read more

Salient features

Year ended
31 December 2019
  Q4 December 2019
US$249 million*
cash inflow
from operating activities less net capital expenditure, environmental payments, lease payments and redemption of Asanko preference shares
  590,000
ounces of
attributable gold production
US$552 million
Mine cash flow
  US$974
per ounce of
All-in costs
2.195
million ounces of
attributable gold production
 
US$1,064
per ounce of
All-in costs
  US$864**
per ounce of
All-in sustaining costs
US$897**
per ounce of
All-in sustaining costs
   

* After all capital expenditure on Gruyere and Damang and exploration and project expenses at Salares Norte.
** Revised interpretation guidance (World Gold Council).

2019 Highlights
Gruyere commissioned and ramped up to nameplate capacity

South Deep restructuring embedded and cash positive

South Deep restructuring embedded and cash positive

Net debt (pre-IFRS 16) decreased to US$1,331m

Net debt/EBITDA (pre-IFRS 16) ratio 1.08 times

All mines in the Group cash positive


  Q4 2019 Highlights
Gruyere reached commercial levels of production

Further improvement at South Deep including cash generation of R295m

Hamlet North first gold

13% increase in gold production underpinned by Gruyere ramp-up, strong performance from St Ives, South Deep and Cerro Corona


JOHANNESBURG. 12 February 2020: Gold Fields Limited (NYSE & JSE: GFI) announced normalised profit of US$343m for the year ended 31 December 2019 compared with normalised profit of US$27m for the year ended 31 December 2018.

A final dividend number 91 of 100 SA cents per share (gross) is payable on 16 March 2020, giving a total dividend for the year ended 31 December 2019 of 160 SA cents per share (gross).
Statement by Nick Holland,
Chief Executive Officer of Gold Fields

Strong finish to 2019

Gold Fields had a strong finish to 2019, reporting higher production and lower costs for the last quarter of the year. For Q4 2019, attributable gold equivalent production was up 13% QoQ to 590koz (Q3 2019: 523koz) driven by the ramp up at Gruyere as well as increased production at St Ives with a greater contribution from the underground mines. All-in sustaining costs (AISC) on the revised WGC interpretation decreased by 9% QoQ to US$864/oz (Q3 2019: US$947/oz) with all-in costs (AIC) 10% lower QoQ at US$974/oz (Q3 2019: US$1,084/oz).

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Entering a period of strong operational cash flow

2019 marked the end of Gold Fields' reinvestment programme which started in the latter part of 2016. Having reinvested close to US$1bn in the business over this period, the Group managed to limit the cash outflow, with minimal impact on the balance sheet, as a consequence of funding the vast part of this reinvestment from internal cash flows. During 2019 Gold Fields generated cash flow from operating activities less net capital expenditure, environmental payments and redemption of Asanko preference shares of US$249m as the new projects started to make a positive contribution to the Group and the project capital expenditure came to an end. The benefits of our investments are expected to continue into 2020, with Group attributable production expected to be 4 – 5% higher at 2.275Moz to 2.315Moz and Group AIC expected to be 1 – 3% lower at US$1,035/oz to 1,055/oz (including Salares Norte expenditure) when compared to 2019. AISC are expected to be US$920/oz to US$940/oz in 2020 compared with US$897/oz in 2019. The higher gold price (including our hedges for 2020) places the company in a strong position to generate substantial free cash flow for 2020.

Despite the significant expenditure over the past three years, Gold Fields has retained the strength of its balance sheet. As at 31 December 2019, net debt (pre-IFRS 16) was US$1.3bn, with a net debt to EBITDA of 1.08x virtually in-line with the target that was only expected to be achieved at the end of 2020. We expect a further meaningful decrease in the net debt during 2020.

Given the healthy position of the company, Gold Fields is pleased to announce that the Board has approved the construction and development of the Salares Norte project in Chile. The project is expected to meaningfully change the future profile of Gold Fields, providing growth in production and a reduction in Group AIC.

The project capital is expected to be funded from the capital markets, the strong operational cash generation and existing debt facilities, if required.

2019 in review

Regrettably, we had one fatality during 2019 at our South Deep mine, which we reported during H1 2019. Our journey to zero harm continues and during 2019 we launched a new Group wide safety campaign, Courageous Safety Leadership, which will be fully rolled out during 2020.

For the first time ever, Gold Fields recorded no Level 3 – 5 environmental incidents for 2019, while the number of Level 2 incidents, which have a limited environmental impact, declined by 46%.

Attributable gold equivalent production for 2019 was 2,195koz, an 8% increase YoY (FY18: 2,036koz), exceeding the upper end of the guidance range of 2,130-2,180koz. Production once again exceeded the annual guidance provided at the start of the year.

AIC for 2019 was US$1,064/oz, 9% lower than 2018 (FY18: US$1,173/oz) and below guidance of US$1,075/oz to US$1,095/oz. AISC on the original WGC interpretation were US$970/oz (FY18: US$981/oz) and US$897/oz on the revised interpretation. AISC guidance for the year was between US$980/oz and US$995/oz.

Headline earnings for 2019 were US$163m or US$0.20 per share (2018: US$61m or US$0.07 per share). Normalised profit for the year was US$343m or US$0.42 per share a more than twelve fold increase YoY (2018: US$27m or US$0.03 per share).

In line with our dividend policy of paying out 25% to 35% of normalised earnings as dividends, we declared a final dividend of 100 SA cents per share. This takes the total dividend for the year to 160 SA cents per share (FY 2018: 40 SA cents per share).

Strong operational performance, an increase in the gold price and lower project capital expenditure drove a significant swing in net cash flow, with US$249m generated during 2019, compared to an outflow of US$122m in 2018. Mine cash flow for the year, which excludes project capital, was US$552m, compared to US$345m in 2018.

On the back of the net cash flow for the year and the sale of non-core investments, which generated US$179m, the net debt (pre-IFRS 16) at 31 December 2019 decreased to US$1,331m, compared to US$1,687m at the end of FY 2018. This implies a net debt to EBITDA of 1.08x, compared to 1.52x at the end of December 2018. When adjusting for IFRS 16 (which includes the capitalisation of leases on long-term "over the fence'' infrastructure projects principally related to energy, the servicing of which is already included in mine cash flow), the net debt balance at the end of FY 2019 was US$1,664m, with a net debt to EBITDA of 1.29x. Since IFRS 16 was adopted by Gold Fields at the start of 2019, going forward we will only be reporting net debt on this basis.

Successful debt refinancing

New bonds issued

On 9 May 2019, Gold Fields successfully concluded the raising of two new bonds – a US$500m 5-year bond with a coupon of 5.125% and a US$500m 10-year bond with a coupon of 6.125% – raising a total of US$1 billion at an average coupon of 5.625%. The proceeds of the bond raising were used to repay amounts outstanding under the US$1,290m Credit Facilities Agreement and to buyback US$250m of the outstanding 2020 notes at 102% of par.

US$1,200 million revolving credit facility

On 25 July 2019, the Group entered into a US$1,200 million revolving credit facilities agreement, with a syndicate of international banks and financial institutions. The new facilities which became effective on the same day comprise two tranches:

US$600m 3+1+1 (two 1-year extension options subject to bank consent) year revolving credit facility (RCF) – at a margin of 1.45% over Libor; and
US$600m 5+1+1 (two 1-year extension options subject to bank consent) year revolving credit facility (RCF) – at a margin of 1.70% over Libor.

This replaced the US$1,290m Credit Facilities Agreement that had maturity dates of June 2020 and June 2021 with margins that were approximately 0.75% higher than those negotiated above.

Highlights of 2019

Damang

Damang generated its first positive cash flow of US$17m in 2019 since the start of the Damang Reinvestment Project (DRP). 2020 will be a year of two halves for Damang. The key focus for the next six months is to accelerate development through the variable grade transitional material. We expect to be in the heart of the main orebody by mid-2020 and expect a strong H2 2020.

At the end of the December 2019 quarter, 36 months into the DRP, total material mined amounted to 120 million tonnes, 17% ahead of the project schedule. Gold produced for the same period was 532,800 ounces, 17% above the DRP plan of 456,460 ounces. Project capital spent as at 31 December 2019 was US$347 million versus the DRP budget of US$313m, largely driven by the additional capital waste tonnes mined.

Gruyere

The Gruyere project was successfully completed during 2019, with first gold produced in June 2019. Commercial levels of production were achieved at the end of September. Gruyere produced 99,100 ounces (100% basis) in 2019, hitting the upper end of the revised guidance (75,000 ounces – 100,000 ounces on a 100% basis).

The final capital cost for the Gruyere construction programme was A$610m, with Gold Fields share of the capital cost being A$329m

All-in costs post commercial levels of production for the 3 months from September 2019 were A$983/oz (US$684/oz), with the mine generating net cash flow of A$31m (US$21m) in Q4 2019.

Salares Norte

As reported at the end of 2019, the Environmental Impact Assessment for the project was approved on 18 December 2019, earlier than estimated in the project schedule. As a result, the updated feasibility study was presented to the Board in February 2020 and the final notice to proceed (FNTP) was provided by the Board.

The updated capital expenditure estimate is US$860m (in 2020 terms). The capital expenditure is scheduled over a 33-month period commencing in April 2020.

The other key elements of the updated feasibility study are:

Mineral Reserve of 3.5Moz of gold and 39Moz of silver for a gold equivalent Reserve of 4.0Moz as at December 2019;
11.5-year life-of-mine;
Construction is scheduled to commence in Q4 2020;
First production in Q1 2023;
Annual throughput of 2Mt of ore;
Life-of-mine production of 3.7Moz gold equivalent;
Average annual production of 450koz gold equivalent for the first seven years, and average annual production of 355koz gold equivalent for the first 10 years; and
AISC over the life-of-mine of US$552 per gold equivalent ounce.

During 2019, the district exploration yielded encouraging results at the Horizonte Project. In addition, more work is being done on the step out potential at Agua Amarga North and Brecha West targets near the Salares Norte pit.

Regional overview

Ghana

Total managed production increased by 12% to 840koz in 2019 from 750koz in 2018, driven by the build-up in production at Damang and the inclusion of a full 12-months' worth of production from Asanko (2018 only included Asanko production for 5 months from 1 August 2018).

All-in costs decreased by 5% to US$1,039/oz in 2019 from US$1,098/oz in 2018 as the project capital at Damang rolled off.

The region produced net cash flow of US$174m in 2019 compared to US$45m in 2018.

Australia

Gold Fields' Australian operations delivered another strong operational performance in 2019. Gold production increased by 3% to 914koz in 2019 from 886koz in 2018, mainly due to the inclusion of Gruyere production during H2 2019.

All-in cost increased by 12% to A$1,418/oz (US$986/oz) in 2019 from A$1,262/oz (US$943/oz) in 2018 due to higher cost of sales before amortisation and depreciation, partially offset by lower capital expenditure.

The Australia region reported a net cash inflow of US$139m in 2019 which includes Gruyere growth capital of US$67m compared to US$30m in 2018 which included US$163m cash outflow for Gruyere.

Peru

Equivalent gold production decreased by 7% to 292,700 ounces in 2019 from 314,100 ounces in 2018, mainly due to the lower copper/gold price ratio.

Total all-in costs per equivalent ounce increased by 16% to US$810 per equivalent ounce in 2019 from US$699 per equivalent ounce in 2018. Cerro Corona generated net cash of US$86m in 2019.

South Africa

Gold production at South Deep increased by 41% to 6,907kg (222,100oz) in 2019 from 4,885kg (157,100oz) in 2018 exceeding guidance of 6,000kg (193,000oz). The increased gold production resulted from an increase in both volume and grade mined.

Total all-in cost decreased by 31% to R585,482/kg (US$1,259/oz) in 2019 from R854,049/kg (US$2,012/oz) in 2018 due to the same reasons as above, together with the temporary postponement of new mine development capital.

Following the restructuring at the end of 2018, South Deep demonstrated a remarkable improvement in most production metrics during 2019, resulting from a culmination of initiatives driving organisational culture, systems, processes, and technical improvements.

South Deep generated net cash of R221m (US$15m) in 2019 compared to an outflow of R1,923m (US$146m) in 2018.

Mineral reserves

In 2019, the Group had one of its best years with regards to reserve replacement. Some of the significant developments, include:

There was a 0.5Moz (8% YoY) increase in the Australian region's reserves, net of depletion;
There was a 0.1Moz (2% YoY) increase in Tarkwa's reserves, net of depletion.

As at end-2019, 20.5Moz of Gold Fields' attributable gold equivalent Reserves (excluding Gold Fields' 45% interest in the Asanko Gold Mine) were outside South Africa, representing 41% of the Group's Reserve base.

  Year ended  
 
Managed   Attributable  
December 2019          
Gold equivalent resources Moz 146.8   114.0  
Gold equivalent reserves Moz 54.1   50.2  
December 2018          
Gold equivalent resources Moz 140.5   108.2  
Gold equivalent reserves Moz 54.0   50.3  
Metal prices used for equivalent ounces:
  Gold US$1,200/oz
  Copper US$2.8/lb
  Silver US$17.50/oz
The metallurgical recovery rate has not been applied to the conversion.
All reserves and resource numbers exclude Gold Fields’ 45% interest in Asanko.

Outlook for 2020

Attributable equivalent gold production for the Group for 2020 is expected to be between 2,275Moz and 2,315Moz. AISC is expected to be between US$920/oz and US$940/oz. AIC is planned to be between US$1,035/oz and US$1,055/oz. If we exclude expenditure on Salares Norte, AIC for the Group is expected to be between US$975/oz and US$995/oz. These expectations assume exchange rates of R/US$: 14.50 and A$/US$: 0.69.

Capital expenditure for the Group is planned at US$630m. Sustaining capital expenditure for the Group is planned at US$406m and growth capital expenditure is planned at US$224m. The US$224m growth capital expenditure comprises US$60m for the Australia region, US$10m for Damang, US$15m for South Deep, US$28m for Cerro Corona and US$111m for Salares Norte. Due to the revised WGC interpretation on AISC certain capital expenditure has been reclassified from sustaining capital to growth capital (primarily for Australia and Cerro Corona). The capital expenditure above excludes the Group's share of Asanko's total capital expenditure of US$34m for 2020.

Nick Holland
Chief Executive Officer
12 February 2020



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STOCK DATA FOR THE YEAR ENDED DECEMBER 2019
 
Number of shares in issue     NYSE – (GFI)      
– at 31 December 2019   828,632,707     Range – Year   US$5.04 – US$6.69  
– average for the year   827,386,603     Average Volume – year   6,053,881 shares/day  
Free Float   100 per cent     JSE LIMITED – (GFI)      
ADR Ratio   1:1     Range – Year   ZAR46.72 – ZAR96.02  
Bloomberg/Reuters   GFISJ/GFLJ.J     Average Volume – year   2,794,445 shares/day