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NEXA RESOURCES S.A. (NASDAQ:NEXA) Nexa Reports Second Quarter 2023 Results including Adjusted EBITDA of US$72 Million

Directive transparence : information réglementée

27/07/2023 23:45

LUXEMBOURG / ACCESSWIRE / July 27, 2023 / Nexa Resources S.A. ("Nexa Resources", "Nexa", or "Company") announces today its results for the three months ended June 30, 2023.

CEO Message - Ignacio Rosado

"In 2Q23, we experienced an increasingly volatile macroeconomic environment, driven by persistent U.S. inflation in some important sectors, and concerns about the Chinese economy, where relevant indicators such as the property sector and GDP, came in below expectations. These factors put downward pressure on base metal prices, with zinc prices falling 19% and copper 5% compared to 1Q23.

As we anticipated in the previous quarter, some of these headwinds are persisting and continue to weigh on metal prices and our business.

Although we expect LME prices to remain under pressure, we remain committed to financial discipline, evidenced by a portfolio of initiatives focused on cost reduction, plus CAPEX and working capital optimization which are being implemented, and are among our priorities for the year. These initiatives have allowed us to achieve positive cash generation in 2Q23. Despite this challenging environment, we are maintaining our production and cash cost guidance.

From an operational standpoint, we have made good progress in the completion of the ramp-up phase at Aripuanã, which will contribute to enhancing our operational profile and cash generation capacity. In 2Q23, importantly, production and capacity utilization increased while concentrates quality also improved. The zinc concentrate is being processed by our smelters in Brazil, and the copper concentrate is being shipped to an off-taker. In addition, lead concentrates are also being sold.

Looking ahead, we will remain focused on completing the ramp up of Aripuanã and taking appropriate measures to maintain a healthy balance sheet. Additionally, we will continue to advance our mineral exploration plan, the optimization of our portfolio as well as carry on with the studies related to the Pasco Integration Project, aiming to develop a robust organic strategic option for Nexa.

Lastly, we remain confident in the long-term fundamentals of our industry and our business. We will continue focusing on safety, productivity and costs control, in order to create value for all our stakeholders, always prioritizing our ESG commitments."

Summary of Financial Performance

US$ million (except per share amounts)2Q231Q232Q221H231H22
Net revenues
6276678291,2941,552
Gross profit
62100273161470
Net income (loss)
(103)(15)124(118)198
EBITDA (1)
(44)11531471503
Basic and diluted earnings per share ("EPS")
(0.77)(0.15)0.82(0.92)1.30
Adjusted net income (loss) (1)
12211215214
Adjusted EBITDA (1)
72133302205519
Adjusted basic and diluted EPS (1)
0.04(0.01)0.740.031.43
Cash provided by operating activities before working capital (1) (2)
51106241157468
Capex
605698116180
Free cash flows (1)
34(132)29(97)(139)
Total cash (3)
421375633421633
Net debt (1)
1,2621,3021,0451,2621,045
Net Debt/LTM Adj. EBITDA
2.83x1.92x1.23x2.83x1.23x

(1) Refer to "Use of Non-IFRS Financial Measures" for further information. Adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income (loss) and adjusted EPS, exclude the items presented in the "Net income (loss) reconciliation to Adjusted EBITDA" section for further details on page 12 of this earnings release. For details on segment definition and accounting policy, please refer to explanatory note 2 - "Information by business segment" in the "Condensed consolidated interim financial statements (unaudited) at and for the three and six-month periods ended on June 30, 2023".

(2) Working capital had a positive impact of US$83 million in 2Q23, totaling negative US$21 million in 1H23. Working capital in 2Q22 had a negative impact of US$23 million, totaling negative US$179 million in 1H22.

(3) Cash, cash equivalents and financial investments.

Executive Summary

Operational Performance

  • Zinc production of 81kt in 2Q23 rose by 2% compared to 2Q22, mainly explained by the increase in treated ore volume and the start-up of the Aripuanã operation. Compared to 1Q23, zinc production increased by 8% due to the resumption of the Cerro Lindo mine and the progress of the Aripuanã ramp-up.
  • Run-of-mine mining cost in 2Q23 was US$44/t, in the mid-range of our guidance for the year and 3% higher when compared to 2Q22. Compared to 1Q23, run-of-mine mining cost decreased by 2%.
  • Mining cash cost net of by-products1 in 2Q23 was US$0.37/lb compared with US$0.16/lb in 2Q22. This increase was mainly due to lower by-products contribution driven by lower LME prices, and higher treatment charges ("TCs"). Compared to 1Q23, mining cash cost net of by-products decreased by 14% from US$0.43/lb explained by higher by-products contribution due to higher lead and copper concentrate volumes.
  • The smelting segment delivered metal production of 148kt, down by 6% from 2Q22, mainly driven by lower volumes in Cajamarquilla and Três Marias. Compared to 1Q23, production was up 1%.
  • In 2Q23, zinc metal and oxide sales were 149kt, down by 2% from 2Q22 following lower production volumes. Compared to 1Q23, metal sales grew 4%, driven by higher production volumes and sales strategy in line with working capital improvement initiatives.
  • Smelting conversion cost was US$0.31/lb in 2Q23 compared with US$0.29/lb in 2Q22 due to higher maintenance, energy expenses and other variable costs, which was partially offset by lower third-party services. Compared to 1Q23, conversion cost was flat.
  • Smelting cash cost1 was US$1.12/lb in 2Q23 compared with US$1.46/lb in 2Q22 and compared with US$1.25 in 1Q23. In both periods, the decrease was mainly explained by lower zinc prices.
    Aripuanã
  • Ramp-up activities are progressing well and are currently focused on steadily increasing the plant throughput rate, asset reliability, and reduction of plant downtime, as well as improving metal recoveries and concentrate grades and quality while consuming our ore stockpile inventory. At the end of 2Q23, the plant reached 76%2 of nameplate capacity (vs. 50% in 1Q23), while the average utilization rate in 2Q23 was 66%. The plant downtime reduced significantly from 394 hours in March to 148 hours in June, a 62% reduction. In 2Q23, recovery rates improved compared to 1Q23, with zinc recovery averaging 63% in June compared to 48% in March. Concentrates grades are also improving. Zinc concentrates average grade reached 52% in 2Q23 and the concentrate is being processed by our smelters in Brazil. For the upcoming quarters, we expect to conclude the adjustments related to the bottlenecks in the pumping and piping systems mentioned in the previous quarter, and further improve the recovery and concentrate grades. This would allow us to reach approximately 80-85% of the nameplate capacity in 3Q23, paving the way to expected operations above 90% in 4Q23.

Financial Performance

  • Net revenues in 2Q23 were US$627 million compared with US$829 million in 2Q22, mainly due to lower LME metal prices and, to a lesser extent, smelting sales volume. Compared to 1Q23, net revenues decreased by 6% as a result of lower LME metal prices, partially offset by higher mining production and metal sales volumes. In 1H23, net revenues amounted to US$1,294 million, down 17% compared to the same period a year ago.
  • Adjusted EBITDA3 in 2Q23 was US$72 million, compared with US$302 million in 2Q22 and US$133 million in 1Q23. This decrease was mainly driven by lower LME metal prices (Zn down 35% vs 2Q22 and 19% vs 1Q23). In 1H23, Adjusted EBITDA amounted to US$205 million, down 61% compared to the same period a year ago.
  • Adjusted EBITDA for the mining segment in 2Q23 was US$20 million compared with US$42 million in 1Q23. This decrease was mainly driven by lower LME metal prices and higher TCs, higher operational costs mainly related to concentrate and stockpile costs in Aripuanã and exchange rate effect, which were partially offset by higher sales volume in Cerro Lindo and Aripuanã, and higher by-products contribution. Compared to 2Q22, Adjusted EBITDA decreased by 88%.
  • Adjusted EBITDA for the smelting segment in 2Q23 was US$51 million compared with US$89 million in 1Q23. This decrease was mainly driven by the negative net price effect related to changes in market prices resulting in quotation period adjustments, the negative impact of slightly higher freight and sales expenses, higher third-party services and maintenance expenses mainly related to the scheduled maintenance in Três Marias. These were partially offset by the positive hedge variation and higher by-products contribution. Compared to 2Q22, Adjusted EBITDA decreased by 64%.
  • In 2Q23, net loss was US$103 million, totaling US$118 million in 1H23, resulting in losses per share of US$0.77 and US$0.92, respectively.
  • Adjusted net income in 2Q23, was US$12 million, totaling US$15 million in 1H23. Adjusted net income attributable to Nexa's shareholders was US$6 million in 2Q23 and US$4 million in 1H23, resulting in adjusted EPS of US$0.04 and US$0.03, respectively.

Financial Position, Investments and Financing

  • Total cash4 at June 30, 2023, increased to US$421 million from US$375 million at March 31, 2023. Our current available liquidity remains at US$721 million, including our revolving credit facility of US$300 million.
  • In 2Q23, our free cash flow generation was positive US$34 million, mainly due to the positive impact of working capital changes of US$83 million, as a result of decrease in inventories and trade accounts receivables and increase of confirming payables, partially offset by the decrease in trade payables, which was partially offset by investments in sustaining CAPEX (including HSE investments) in the amount of US$60 million, including US$16 million in Aripuanã. Refer to our "Net cash flows from operating activities excluding working capital changes and free cash flow - Reconciliation" section for further details.
  • Net debt to Adjusted EBITDA ratio for the last twelve months ("LTM") increased to 2.83x compared with 1.92x at the end of March 2023 and 1.23x at the end of 2Q22. The increase was mainly due to lower LTM Adjusted EBITDA, impacted in part by lower metal prices.

Environmental, Social and Governance ("ESG") and Corporate Highlights

  • In the last week of June, Nexa informed that production at the Atacocha San Gerardo open pit mine was temporarily suspended due to protest activities by local communities. The communities were illegally blocking access to the mine and claiming rights over areas registered as the property of Nexa Atacocha. Nexa is complying with all existing agreements, pursuing an active dialogue with the community and authorities for a peaceful resolution of this situation and continuing to reinforce its commitment to the social development of all its host communities.
  • In June 2023, at the Annual General Meeting, Mr. Hilmar Rode was approved as an independent director of the Company for a term starting as of June 22, 2023, and ending at the 2024 annual general meeting of the shareholders. Mr. Rode has over 30 years of experience in the global mining, materials, chemicals, and industrial gases industries. Mr. Rode has been the CEO of Sibelco Group since September 2020.
  • In May 2023, Nexa released its 2022 Annual Sustainability Report, which provides detailed information on the company's main economic, financial, environmental, and social results achieved throughout 2022. The document is available at: (https://www.nexaresources.com/en/esg/performance/). Information contained on our website is not incorporated by reference into this Earnings Release, and you should not consider it to be part of this Earnings Release.
  • In April 2023, we, along with one of our local suppliers, committed to reducing CO2 emissions by using natural gas to replace diesel fuel in vehicles that transport materials at mining sites in Peru, in line with our commitments to decarbonize our value chain. Currently, 25% of the fleet of 20 trucks are already operating using natural gas, and our goal is for our fleet to achieve 100% of vehicles using natural gas. With this first step we expect to reduce approximately 23 tons of CO2 emitted by our vehicles annually.
  • We have obtained the authorization from the Regional Superintendence for the Environment of the State of Minas Gerais to use biofuel to replace fossil fuels, used in all 47 furnaces in the zinc oxide operation in Três Marias. During the quarter we made progress by increasing bio-oil consumption in 3 zinc oxide process furnaces. By the end of the year, our goal is to expand the use of biofuel to 12 furnaces at the Três Marias smelter.
  • The Global Mining Industry Risk Management ("GMIRM") Program, developed in partnership with the University of São Paulo ("USP"), expanded its scope in 2023 through offering training to operational coordinators and supervisors. By the end of June 2023, 230 leaders have been trained across 10 courses, with the goal of engaging our operational teams by enhancing our commitment to Health, Safety and Environment (HS&E) efforts.
  • Nexa partnered with Amazon Web Services with the goal of training 100,000 individuals in cloud computing fundamentals in Brazil and Peru by 2025, creating opportunities for skills development and nurturing local talents.
  • In July 2023, we registered our carbon emissions on "LMEpassport", the London Metal Exchange platform that promotes sustainability and transparency across the base metals sector. Nexa's zinc production has one of the lowest carbon footprints recorded in the sector, with an emission intensity of 0.36 tons of CO2 equivalent (scopes 1 and 2) according to the GHG protocol methodology, an achievement that positions Nexa as a global leader in carbon reduction within the zinc industry.

Growth Strategy and Asset Portfolio

  • We have been focused on free cash flow generation and we continue to evaluate our capital allocation framework to ensure that Nexa's capital is appropriately allocated to the highest return assets.
  • Our strategic review of our assets continues along with initiatives to optimize the portfolio. We continue to assess risk-return alternatives for our Magistral copper project in Peru and our Morro Agudo mine and Bonsucesso project in Brazil and, in the meantime, we have recorded an impairment against these two assets this quarter.
  • We are progressing the technical studies of the Pasco integration project, aiming to develop a robust organic growth option for Nexa. The project has the potential to unlock important value for Nexa through economies of scale, costs improvements and extension of the life of the asset.
  • In addition to our greenfield exploration focused on organic growth, we have been selectively evaluating certain minor assets and certain other potential external growth alternatives for Nexa, such as our investment in Tinka Resources Limited.

Outlook

Production, Sales and Cash Cost Guidance

  • As of the date of this report, in 2023, Nexa has experienced disruptions to production, sales, and its supply chain due to community blockages and weather conditions related to the rainy season and/or climate change.
  • Nexa will continue to monitor risks associated with global supply chain disruptions, which could be exacerbated, among other factors, by the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, unusual weather conditions and/or increased restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic; the global recession, and the potential impact on the demand for our products; inflationary cost pressure; metal prices; and community protests, political situation and changes to the regulatory framework in the countries in which we operate that could affect our production levels and our costs. Refer to "Risks and Uncertainties" and "Cautionary Statement on Forward-Looking Statements" for further information.
  • Nexa reiterates its 2023 production guidance for all metals. Zinc metal sales, consolidated cash cost for mining and smelting, capital expenditures, exploration, project evaluation and other expenses are outlined below.
    • Cerro Lindo: we expect to increase production in 3Q23 due to renewed access to the high-grade areas that were restricted in 2Q23 after the rainfall-related shutdown in mid-March (due to the effects of cyclone Yaku), which impacted the mine development. These areas are currently in the process of preparation and will be prioritized in the upcoming quarters.
    • El Porvenir: based on mine sequencing, zinc production in 3Q23 is expected to remain at a similar level to the average in 2Q23. Lead and silver production are also expected to increase, due to estimated higher average head grades.
    • Atacocha: zinc production is estimated to decrease in 3Q23 compared to 2Q23 due to illegal protest activities that started at the end of June and ceased as of the date of this release.
    • Vazante: ore throughput in 3Q23 is expected to be higher than 2Q23, and zinc production is expected to follow the same trend, given the scheduled maintenance (mill replacement) that took place in 2Q23, which is expected to further improve the plant performance in the upcoming months (the capacity of the new mill is expected to increase by 5-10%).
    • Morro Agudo: zinc production in 3Q23 is expected to remain at a similar level to the average of 2Q23. Lead production is expected to decrease compared to 2Q23, due to the estimated lower average head grade.
    • Aripuanã: the ramp-up phase is expected to continue to progress in 3Q23. The annual production guidance continues to be expected on the low end of the guidance range and remains subject to risks around the ramp-up of the mine, among other factors.
  • Zinc metal sales guidance also remains unchanged at 580-605kt.
    • Peru: we expect production in 3Q23 at Cajamarquilla to be at a similar level to the average in 2Q23.
    • Brazil: in Três Marias we expect production to increase in 3Q23 following production stability, while Juiz de Fora production is anticipated to be slightly lower due to scheduled maintenance in the next quarter.
  • Nexa also estimates that 2023 consolidated cash cost guidance for its mining and smelting segments will be achieved.
    • Mining and smelting volumes are expected to increase in 3Q23 compared to 2Q23 and remain in the guidance ranges, as noted above.
    • Continuous improvements in operational efficiency and cost management are expected to offset some of the ongoing inflationary pressures. Certain initiatives are already being implemented in the Aripuanã mine and in the Peruvian mines.
    • We do not expect significant changes in commodity prices in 3Q23 from current levels. Nexa's C1 cash cost is sensitive to by-product prices and volumes, which may affect the results of our final costs.
    • Foreign exchange rates assumptions are maintained (BRL/USD: 5.07 and Soles/USD: 3.94).
    • Zinc TCs assumptions for the year of US$285/t remain unchanged.

Mining segment - production

Mining production 1H23
2023e

(Metal in concentrate)





Zinc
kt
156 307-351
Cerro Lindo

32 69-79
El Porvenir

27 51-55
Atacocha

4 9-11
Vazante

72 131-144
Morro Agudo

10 17-23
Aripuanã

9 28-40

Copper
kt
15 31-36
Cerro Lindo

13 25-28
El Porvenir

0.2 0.2-0.3
Aripuanã

2.0 6.3-7.8

Lead
kt
31 56-71
Cerro Lindo

6 11-13
El Porvenir

12 20-26
Atacocha

6 10-12
Vazante

0.8 1.1-1.2
Morro Agudo

3.8 4.9-6.1
Aripuanã

2.5 8.9-12.9

Silver
MMoz
5.0 9-11
Cerro Lindo

1.6 3.5-3.8
El Porvenir

2.2 3.7-4.5
Atacocha

0.7 1.0-1.2
Vazante

0.3 0.3-0.4
Aripuanã

0.2 0.8-1.2

Smelting segment - sales

Smelting sales
1H23 2023e

Metal Sales
kt 293 580-605
Zinc metal
276 545-565
Zinc oxide
17 35-40

Cash Costs

Mining Operating costs
Cost ROM
(US$/t)
Cash Cost
(US$/lb)
Cost ROM
(US$/t)
Cash Cost
(US$/lb)
1H23 1H23
2023e

2023e





Mining (1)
44.5 0.40 43.9-46.4 0.49-0.54
Cerro Lindo
39.7 (0.08) 40.1-42.1 0.11-0.13
El Porvenir
61.6 0.28 57.3-60.7 0.39-0.42
Atacocha
34.0 (0.60) 33.1-35.4 0.26-0.30
Vazante
56.2 0.62 57.2-59.0 0.68-0.74
Morro Agudo
33.1 0.96 35.0-38.2 1.02-1.18

(1) C1 Weighted Cash cost net of by-products credits is measured with respect to zinc sold per mine.

Smelting Operating costs
Conversion cost
(US$/lb)
Cash Cost
(US$/lb)
Conversion cost
(US$/lb)
Cash Cost
(US$/lb)
1H23 1H23 2023e 2023e

Smelting (2)
0.31 1.19 0.29-0.32 1.13-1.18
Cajamarquilla
0.29 1.12 0.27-0.29 1.11-1.15
Três Marias
0.25 1.26 0.27-0.30 1.10-1.15
Juiz de Fora
0.49 1.29 0.45-0.49 1.27-1.37

(2) C1 Weighted Cash cost net of by-products credits is measured with respect to zinc sold per smelter.

  • Mining C1 cash cost of US$0.40/lb in 1H23 was lower than our 2023 guidance driven primarily by Cerro Lindo and Atacocha. For reference, please see the section "Business performance - Mining segment".
  • Smelting C1 cash cost of US$1.19/lb in 1H23 was slightly higher than our 2023 guidance. This was mainly related to lower by-products credits in the period, driven by lower LME metal prices. Smelting C1 cash in 2Q23 was within the guidance range.

Capital Expenditures ("CAPEX") Guidance

  • Nexa invested US$60 million in 2Q23, totaling US$116 million in 1H23. All of the investment was classified as sustaining, which includes capex to sustain operations, HS&E and mine development.
  • At Aripuanã, sustaining capex in 2Q23 accounted for US$16 million, totaling US$31 million in 1H23. Of this amount, US$4 million was invested in mine development in the quarter, totaling US$11 million in 1H23.
  • The Brazilian real appreciation against the U.S. dollar had a negative impact of US$1.7 million in the quarter, totaling a negative impact of US$0.9 million in 1H23.
  • 2023 CAPEX guidance remains unchanged to date, however, in view of the challenged scenario regarding lower prices, the company has been implementing initiatives to optimize capital allocation, which may generate a downward revision of the CAPEX guidance in 2H23.
CAPEX
1H23 2023e
(US$ million)
Expansion projects (1)
(1) 7

Non-Expansion
123 303
Sustaining (2)
115 268
HSE
7 26
Others (3)
2 10
Reconciliation to Financial Statements (4)
(6) -
TOTAL
116 310

(1) Including Vazante deepening, among other several projects to improve operational performance. The negative impact in 1H23 refers to provisions not reversed in the period.

(2) Investments in tailing dams are included in sustaining expenses.

(3) Modernization, IT and others.

(4) The amounts are mainly related to capitalization of interest net of advanced payments for imported materials and tax credits.

Exploration & Project Evaluation and Other Expenses Guidance

  • In 2Q23 we invested US$21 million in exploration and project evaluation, totaling US$42 million in 1H23.
  • Total planned exploration and project evaluation expenditures are expected to be US$110 million in 2023 and remain unchanged at this date.
  • As part of our long-term strategy, we will maintain our efforts to replace and increase mineral reserves and resources. We expect to continue advancing with our exploration activities, primarily focusing on identifying new ore bodies and upgrading resources classification through infill drilling campaigns.
Other Operating Expenses
(US$ million)
1H23 2023e
Exploration
26 55
Mineral Exploration
16 33
Mineral rights
3 7
Sustaining (mine development)
7 15

Project Evaluation
16 55
Três Marias Project
6 20

Exploration & Project Evaluation
42 110

Other
6 25
Technology
2.5 10
Communities
3.3 15

Note: Exploration and project evaluation expenses consider several stages of development, from mineral potential definition, R&D, and subsequent scoping and pre-feasibility studies (FEL1 and FEL2).

About Nexa

Nexa is a large-scale, low-cost integrated zinc producer with over 60 years of experience developing and operating mining and smelting assets in Latin America. Nexa currently owns and operates five long-life mines - three located in the Central Andes of Peru and two located in the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil - and it is ramping up Aripuanã, its sixth mine in Mato Grosso, Brazil. Nexa also currently owns and operates three smelters, two located in Minas Gerais, Brazil and one in Peru, Cajamarquilla, which is the largest smelter in the Americas.
Nexa was among the top five producers of mined zinc globally in 2022 and one of the top five metallic zinc producers worldwide in 2022, according to Wood Mackenzie.

Contact: Nexa Investor Relations | ir@nexaresources.com

1 Our cash cost net of by-products credits is measured with respect to zinc sold.

2 The percentage considers impact from plant downtime (hours) in the referred period.

3 Adjusted EBITDA exclude the items presented in the "Net income (loss) reconciliation to Adjusted EBITDA" section on page 12 of this earnings release - US$115 million in 2Q23, totaling US$133 million in 1H23.

4 Cash and cash equivalents and financial investments.

SOURCE: Nexa Resources S.A.



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