Nevsun Post $54m in Revenue for Second Quarter

Development News
Nevsun paid more than $56 million in income tax
Nevsun paid more than $56 million in income tax

By Nevsun,

Nevsun Resources Ltd. (TSX:NSU / NYSE Amex:NSU) is pleased to report its financial and operating results for the second quarter of 2013. Unless otherwise noted, with the exception of earnings per share and cash cost per ounce figures, all results are in thousands of US dollars.

This release should be read in conjunction with Nevsun Resources Ltd.’s (Nevsun or the Company) condensed consolidated interim financial statements for the six months ended June 30, 2013, and associated Management Discussion and Analysis (MD&A), which are available on the Company’s website , on SEDAR and on EDGAR .

Second Quarter 2013 Highlights

* Produced 34,900 ounces of gold
* Revenues of $54.8 million on 36,200 ounces gold
* Cash cost of $692 per ounce of gold sold(1)
* Net income attributable to Nevsun shareholders was $5.3 million, $0.03 per share
* Copper flotation plant completed on time and under budget
* Commenced copper plant commissioning with pyrite sand
* Maintained strong balance sheet with approximately $384 million in working capital
* Announced 40% increase of semi-annual dividend to $0.07 per share
* Safety milestone reached – 12 million man hours without a lost time injury

(1) Cash cost per ounce sold includes royalties and is a non-GAAP measure; see cautionary note regarding non-GAAP measure in the MD&A.

Recent Development

The processing of supergene copper ore has very recently commenced and we have already produced modest amounts of copper concentrate and plan to ramp up to commercial production before the end of the year.

Cliff Davis, President and CEO of Nevsun commented, “Q2 cash costs were managed to expectations helping Nevsun maintain a strong balance sheet despite the drop in metals prices and delivery of a significant capital expansion project. With $384 million in working capital, including $343 million in cash, no debt, a superior deposit and a supportive partner in the Government of Eritrea, the Company is well positioned for growth.

Bisha’s exploration program is expected to bear fruit in early 2014 and Nevsun has been successful in managing acquisition opportunities so as not be pulled into low return, high-risk investments. That said, given the challenges in the mining market, we are optimistic about external growth opportunities.

It is good news that we consistently complete major capital projects on time and under budget. It is also great news that we are ahead of schedule on the copper plant commissioning.”

Operations Review

Key operating information – Bisha Mine:

For the three months ended June 30, For the six months ended June 30,
2013 2012 2013 2012
Ore mined, tonnes 425,000 500,000 900,000 849,000
Waste mined, tonnes(1) 1,647,000 1,658,500 3,572,000 3,484,700
Strip ratio (using BCMs) 4.5 4.0 4.8 4.9
Copper phase prestrip, tonnes 480,600
Tonnes milled 455,000 465,000 887,000 895,000
Gold grade (g/t) 2.75 6.93 3.43 6.76
Recovery, % of gold 80% 85% 79% 86%
Gold in doré, ounces produced 34,900 87,000 77,200 169,000
Gold ounces sold 36,200 87,500 77,700 170,600
Gold price realized per ounce $   1,374 $   1,599 $   1,490 $   1,654
Cash cost per ounce sold(2) $      692 $      253 $      623 $      265

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(1) All waste tonnes mined reflect updated rock density estimates.

(2) Cash cost per ounce sold includes royalties and is a non-GAAP measure; see cautionary note regarding non-GAAP measure in the MD&A.

Over half of the ore mined for the six months ended June 30, 2013, came from the Harena satellite deposit, which is lower grade than the Bisha Main deposit, which accounted for the drop in feed grade from Q2 2012 of 6.93 g/t to 2.75 g/t in Q2 2013. The strip ratio was expected to be significantly higher in the six months ended June 30, 2013, as compared to the same period in 2012, as the plan was to move more waste in 2013 than has actually been achieved.

The lower than planned waste mined resulted from equipment availability issues, which negatively impacted the mining schedule. A plan is in place to catch up the waste movement over the next twelve months to avoid any significant impact to the long-term mine plan.

Gold recovery of 80% for Q2 2013, which was less than the 85% experienced in Q2 2012, was as expected and was attributable to changes in ore mineralogy. The reduction of gold ounces sold to 36,200 in Q2 2013 from the 87,500 ounces sold in Q2 2012 is due to the lower grades and mill recoveries. The decrease in physical ounces produced was within the Company’s expectations and guidance.

Gold cash costs per ounce for Q2 2013 were $692 on 36,200 ounces sold, which included $138 per ounce in silver by-product credits, an increase in cash cost per ounce as compared with $253 in Q2 2013, including $89 per ounce in silver by-product credits. The increase in cash operating costs in Q2 2013 compared to Q2 2012 is primarily attributable to a reduction in gold ounces sold and the accompanying increase in mining and milling costs per ounce produced, partly offset by higher silver by-product credits.

Financial Review

Summary of financial results:

In US $000s (except per share data) For the three months ended June 30, For the six months ended June 30,
2013 2012 2013 2012
Revenues $   54,785 $ 147,713 $ 125,915 $ 297,103
Operating income 20,049 109,671 57,828 220,299
Net income 10,305 66,865 29,808 135,628
Net income attributable to Nevsun shareholders 5,274 39,568 15,899 80,806
Earnings per share attributable to Nevsun shareholders 0.03 0.19 0.08 0.40
Working capital 383,592 354,503 383,592 354,503
Total assets $ 863,122 $ 813,352 $ 863,122 $ 813,352

Details of revenue breakdown for gold and silver, operating expenses, depreciation and depletion, and other expenses are discussed in the Company’s second quarter 2013 MD&A.

Working capital at June 30, 2013, including cash and cash equivalents, was $383,592, approximately the same as at December 31, 2012. The Company’s cash and cash equivalents at June 30, 2013, of $342,828, was down from $396,404 as a result of paying dividends ($9,949), income taxes ($56,984) and investing in copper plant and other capital ($35,611).

Details of sources and uses of cash are presented in the second quarter financial statements and discussed in the MD&A.