Alrosa Mulls Production Boost After Strong Quarter
Alrosa may increase its 2021 production plan in response to diamond shortages and rampant demand, management said after announcing sky-high quarterly results.
“The market is recovering faster than we predicted,” commented Alexey Philippovskiy, the Russian miner’s chief financial officer, in a statement Friday. “Meanwhile, diamond supply is still 20% below the pre-Covid-19 levels, and global production is unlikely to bounce back in the midterm.”
Cutters and polishers have significant backlogs of orders from customers and are enjoying higher profitability than last year, Alrosa explained. They also lack sufficient rough supply and are learning “to run with [the] lowest ever stockpiles,” the company added.
In light of this, the Russian miner said it might raise its full-year output forecast by 5% from its current one of 31.5 million carats. This would be the second increase in the company’s production outlook for the year; it originally planned to dig up 28 million to 30 million carats, but revised that figure in March. Actual production in 2020 came to 30 million carats.
The latest update comes after Alrosa reported a net profit of RUB 30.18 billion ($411.7 million) in the second quarter — the highest for any quarter in more than three years — compared with just RUB 263 million ($3.6 million) during the peak of the Covid-19 crisis a year earlier.
Revenue jumped more than tenfold to RUB 92.45 billion ($1.26 billion), reflecting a rebound from last year’s market-wide slump. Sales of rough and polished diamonds came to RUB 87.74 billion ($1.2 billion) — up from RUB 6.27 billion ($85.5 million) in the same period of 2020.
The company benefited from a 7% increase in like-for-like rough prices compared to the previous quarter. Other revenues came from the company’s transport, energy and social-infrastructure businesses.