Nickel Asia founder Zamora retires

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WWW.NICKELASIA.COMNICKEL ASIA Corp. (NAC) on Tuesday announced the retirement of its chairman and founder Manuel B. Zamora, Jr.

In a disclosure to the stock exchange, NAC said Mr. Zamora has been appointed as chairman emeritus, while current president Gerard H. Brimo was named chairman and CEO.

Martin Antonio G. Zamora was named president of NAC and its subsidiaries.

At the same time, NAC reported its attributable net income rose 2% to P1.57 billion in the first half of 2018.

Revenues fell 6% year-on-year to P7.38 billion during the first six months, “due to weaker ore export prices brought about mainly by rising ore shipments from Indonesia.” Indonesia partially lifted its export ore ban in January 2017.

As a result, NAC said it realized an average price of $18.05 per WMT (wet metric ton) on 4.89 million WMT of ore export sales from its four operating mines this year. Last year, it realized an average price of $25.96 per WMT on 4.68 million WMT of ore sales.

“Net foreign exchange gains due to a weaker Peso exchange rate combined with stronger earnings from the Company’s processing plant affiliates, Coral Bay Nickel Corporation (CBNC) and Taganito HPAL Nickel Corporation (THPAL), booked under the equity method, more than offset the drop in the company’s revenues,” NAC said.

NAC realized a net foreign exchange gain of P525 million during the January to June period, versus P167 million during the same period last year.

The company noted CBNC and THPAL also benefited from the rising prices of London Metal Exchange (LME) prices, “due to lower inventories of refined metal in LME warehouses, in part the result of growing demand for nickel used in batteries for the electric vehicle market.”

NAC recognized P526 million of earnings from its 10% share in the two plants during the first half versus the P55 million reported last year.

“The increasing ore supply from Indonesia and its negative effect on ore export prices remains our biggest challenge for the remainder of the year,” Mr. Zamora, NAC’s new president, was quoted as saying in a statement.