Media releases

DRDGOLD declares dividend of 5 SA cents per share

20 August 2009

Johannesburg, South Africa. 20 August 2009. DRDGOLD Limited (JSE: DRD; Nasdaq: DROOY) today announced a final dividend of 5 SA cents per share for the year ended 30 June 2009, compared with 10 cents in the previous year.

Commenting, CEO Niel Pretorius said that – while the Board of Directors recognised the need to “reward shareholders for their continuing support” – this needed to be balanced against the negative impact the rand/dollar exchange rate currently has on revenues.

Cash operating profit for the quarter fell by 99% to R1.3 million, mainly as a result of a 16% drop in the average rand gold price received to R244 927/kg.

While surface gold production was steady at 35 430oz, total gold production was 2% lower at 57 775oz, reflecting a 5% decline in underground production at Blyvoor, where seven higher grade panels at the No 5 Shaft were damaged by seismicity.

Cash operating costs rose by 11% to R235 499/kg, due mainly to the 100% consolidation of ErgoGold’s costs from 1 April 2009 and a R7 million increase in the cost of electricity, the result of higher winter tariffs.

Cash operating profit for the year was 26% lower at R282.7 million, reflecting the impact of the sharp decline in the fourth quarter.

Looking ahead, Pretorius said the company was resolved to address the key risks associated with its underground footprint. At Blyvoor, the seismicity-damaged, higher-grade panels at No 5 Shaft would be rehabilitated over a six-month timeframe and Main Reef mining would be increased to improve flexibility. ERPM’s underground operation, currently on care and maintenance, would be closed.

“Importantly, we have the means to grow our lower-risk, lower-cost, higher-margin surface footprint,” Pretorius said.

The ErgoGold surface circuit was expected to reach steady state in September, with two lines to the Brakpan Plant – one from the L29 dump and the other from the Elsburg Tailings Complex – now activated. Surge capacity on the latter would provide feed flexibility.


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