Thu, 20 Feb 2020 08:00:00 +0100

Year-end Report January – December 2019

Significant events during the fourth quarter 2019

  • The outcome of the Blötberget feasibility study was made public.
  • A conceptual study on the Väsman field was completed.
  • A share offering amounting to SEK 25 million was oversubscribed.

Fourth quarter, 1 October – 31 December 2019

  • Net income amounted to SEK 0 million (0)
  • Earnings after tax amounted to SEK -2.8 million (-2.7)
  • Investments during the period October – December totalled SEK 0.1 million (6.6)
  • Basic earnings per share were SEK -0.14 (-0.13)

The whole year, 1 January – 31 December 2019

  • Net income amounted to SEK 0 million (0)
  • Earnings after tax amounted to SEK -11.2 million (-10.2)
  • Investments during the period January – December totalled SEK 12.1 million (14.9)
  • Basic earnings per share were SEK -0.55 (-0.67)
  • Cash and cash equivalents on 31 December 2019 amounted to SEK 13.0 million (9.2)

Significant events after the end of the period

  • The Company ordered the move of the power lines to allow the construction in the planned industrial area.
     

A positive and eventful year for Nordic Iron Ore

In 2019, Nordic Iron Ore progressed from strength to strength. The biggest – and most important – event was that we received the results from the feasibility study for Blötberget, which showed a viable project with good profitability. We also received favourable results from a scoping study of South Väsman, which makes expansion an attractive proposition. The year ended on a high with a successful rights issue that was heavily oversubscribed.

The feasibility study, which we commissioned from the international consultant Golder Associates, clearly showed that the conditions are in place for profitable mining operations at Blötberget. For example, the study shows that Blötberget can achieve an EBITDA margin of 44 per cent, the net present value is estimated to be just over SEK 1 billion, and payback for all investments is estimated to occur just over 5.5 years from first production.

The feasibility study aims to serve as a basis for decisions to finance the investments. Golder has been conservative on several points in its project design and assumptions, which is positive since major investments should not be based on optimistic or too favourable condtions.

The study, however, does not constitute a detailed plan for the construction work. For example, the study assumes the operation of diesel vehicles, but we would like to harness the recent digital technological developments and create a modern mine that uses electricity to the greatest extent possible. We have begun a project on this together with potential equipment suppliers. For every deviation from the solutions, we naturally must show that the deviation improves the project finances.

Study of South Väsman

The study of South Väsman by mining consultant SRK focused on the possibility of starting a mine in the southern part of the field where we already have been granted a mining concession. SRK judged the mine to be profitable based on the assumption of only supplementing the existing equipment that is being built for Blötberget. The report recommends further exploration of the entire Väsman field to increase the mineral assets and raise their classification. Our geologists have already sketched a relatively limited drilling programme that is expected to be able to raise the classification of a significant portion of the resources obtained from our concession area in South Väsman.

Market

There was an even and mild boost to iron ore prices in the fourth quarter. High-grade ore, IODEX 65%Fe, reached USD 112/t, which corresponds to a premium of USD 6 per ton compared to standard products. Demand for high-grade ore will probably persist since this ore has significantly less of an impact on the environment and is in high demand in the Chinese market. The outbreak of the coronavirus in China, however, has resulted in a sharp downturn in prices at the beginning of the year. This type of problem is temporary, of course, but the closure of entire cities in China has a powerful impact on the market.

Outlook

Ludvika Mines is the umbrella term for Blötberget, Väsman and Håksberg. We are planning to start with Blötberget and then expand into Väsman and Håksberg. One of the strengths of the project is that there is existing electrical power line ready to connect to the facilities we are constructing; however, the power lines go straight over the area where the beneficiation plant will be situated and we have therefore commissioned the network owners VB Energy to move the lines to prepare the area for the planned construction work, and this work has already begun.

The past year was an important year since we received a final report that shows that the Ludvika Mines project could be economically viable. The coming year will also be important for the project since we will now start the search for financing to establish the mine in Blötberget. It is my hope that the ongoing financing activities for the construction of the facilities at Blötberget will also provide us with sufficient resources to increase the rate of development of the Väsman field.

Blötberget is an important first step, which, with for this industry relatively low risk, will make it possible to build facilities that will also be used when we have expanded to Väsman and Håksberg. The study of South Väsman encourages our hope of creating a comprehensive mining area with a long economic life.

For further information please contact:

Lennart Eliasson Managing Director
phone: +46 70 640 5177

lennart.eliasson@nordicironore.se

Nordic Iron Ore Group is a mining company with the ambition to revive and develop the iron ore production of Ludvika Mines in Blötberget and Håksberg. The company also intends to expand its mineral resources, and upgrade them to ore reserves, primarily through exploration and other studies of the connecting Väsman field. The Company has all the necessary permits in place for the mine in Blötberget and will be able to produce iron ore of extremely high quality.

For more information, see www.nordicironore.se.

Nordic Iron Ore’s shares and warrants are listed at Nasdaq First North Growth Market. Wildeco is the company’s Certified Adviser (info@wildeco.se tel +46-8-545 271 00).

This information is required and provided by Nordic Iron Ore AB (publ) under the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was provided by Cision for publication at the date and time set above.

Q4 2019