16 FEBRUARY 2023
Today, we released our half year financial results for FY23.
Our strong financial result was underpinned by copper-equivalent production growth of 12 per cent, our recent portfolio improvements which have increased our exposure to the commodities critical to a low-carbon future, and our continued focus on cost efficiencies.
While commodity prices retreated from record levels, we delivered one of our largest profit results with Underlying EBITDA of US$1.36 billion.
This has enabled us to announce an interim fully franked ordinary dividend of US$224 million – US 4.9 cents per share - in respect of the December 2022 half year. This is in addition to our record US$784 million US dollar fully franked ordinary and special dividends, returned in October 2022, and US$143 million returned via our on-market share buy-back in the December 2022 half year.
Watch: half year financial results and safety performance update from Graham Kerr, South32 CEO
Reflecting our strong balance sheet and confidence in the business outlook, we have increased our flexible capital management program by US$50m to US$2.3 billion, leaving US$158 million to be returned by 1 September 2023.
Production guidance for the second half of the financial year is unchanged, with a forecast 6 per cent increase in production as we realise the benefit of recently completed improvement projects and ramp-up of the Brazil Aluminium smelter.
We also provided an update on the Hermosa project in Arizona, where the feasibility study for Hermosa’s zinc-lead-silver Taylor deposit remains on-track to support a final investment decision in mid-calendar year 2023. We have also confirmed the potential for Hermosa’s Clark deposit to produce battery-grade manganese for the growing North American electric vehicle supply chain.
We also progressed programs to deliver on our climate change commitments and we remain focused on our medium-term target to halve our operational greenhouse emissions by 2035, from our FY21 baseline.