Saudi Ma’aden Q1 profit plunges 48% as products prices drop

14 April 2014 17:21 Source:ICIS News

KARACHI, Pakistan (ICIS)--Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma’aden) posted a 47.66% year-on-year fall in first-quarter net profit on Monday citing weak prices of its products, including diammonium phosphate (DAP) and ammonia, during the period for the decline in earnings.

State-run Ma’aden made a profit of Saudi riyal (SR) 125.2m ($33.4m) in the three months to 31 March, down from SR239.2m in the corresponding period of 2013.

In a brief statement released to Saudi Arabia’s bourse, the company reported that first-quarter gross profit fell by 29.32% year on year to SR396.25m, but was up 9.86% quarter on quarter.

The firm's operating profit fell almost 50% year on year to SR 192.03m. However, it jumped 71.78% quarter on quarter. The company said the profit slump was due to declines “in prices of gold, aluminum, DAP and ammonia.

Ma’aden is active in gold and base metals, aluminum, phosphate and industrial minerals. The company earlier this month secured $2bn in financing from state-owned Public Investment Fund for its planned Waad Al Shamal phosphate project in the north of the kingdom.

The Waad al-Shamal project will involve total investment of around $9bn for a phosphate mine, several major processing facilities, smaller downstream factories and a residential area.

The project in Waad al-Shimal City is a joint venture between Ma’aden, Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) and Mosaic. Ma’aden owns 60%, Mosaic 25% and SABIC 15% in the project.

By Aamir Ashraf