Altius Reports First Quarter 2021 Expected Attributable Royalty Revenue of Approximately $17.7 million
Altius Minerals Corporation (ALS:TSX) (ATUSF: OTCQX) (“Altius” or the “Corporation”) expects to report attributable quarterly royalty revenue† of approximately $17.7 million ($0.43 per share) for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021. This compares to quarterly revenues of $16.3 million ($0.39 per share) in Q1 2020.
Base metal (primarily copper) revenue of $7.6 million, or 43% of total royalty revenue, was positively impacted by improved prices but was offset during the quarter by the unplanned production interruption at Chapada in Q4 2020 that was partially reflected in Q1 2021 stream sales due to normal product delivery and sales lags. Revenue from both 777 and Voisey’s Bay was higher on a year over year comparable period basis on the strength of improved commodity prices. A nominal payment was received from Gunnison from sales of copper recovered during start-up operations to mark first royalty revenue from this asset.
Potash revenue of $4.0 million, or 23% of total revenue, began to reflect the benefits of recent price improvements but was lower than during the year ago comparable quarter, which included a one-time addition of $690,000 related to a reconciliation of prior period payments.
Iron ore revenue of $2.9 million, or 16% of total royalty revenue, compares to $1.0 million in Q1 2020. The earlier period included royalty-based income only as the mine operator, Iron Ore Company of Canada (“IOC”), elected to temporarily withhold quarterly operating level distributions in light of uncertainties at the time related to potential Covid-19 impacts. IOC then made a large “catch up” distribution in Q4 2020.
Champion Iron Ore announced the closing of the acquisition of the Kami iron ore project during the quarter and has begun work to update its prior positive feasibility study and revise the project scope. Kami is located nearby to the south of IOC’s operations and to the east of Champion’s Bloom Lake operations and is subject to a 3% gross sales royalty in favour of Altius.
Thermal coal revenue of $2.9 million, or 17% of total royalty revenue, compares to $2.5 million in Q1 2020. Production levels from the Genesee mine were comparable to the prior year period but were considerably lower at Sheerness, which is approaching planned closure. The increase in revenue over the prior comparable period reflects a higher year over year ownership interest in the partnership that holds the royalties.