Interview with Niël Pretorius, CEO of DRDGOLD Ltd.

Our previous interview:

Recording date: 3rd July 2024

DRDGOLD Limited (NYSE:DRD) presents a unique investment opportunity in the gold mining sector, combining profitable gold production with environmental remediation. As a long-standing player in the South African mining industry, DRDGOLD has adapted its business model to address both the challenges and opportunities presented by the country’s rich mining history.

The company specializes in recovering gold from mine dumps, focusing on reclaiming and reprocessing tailings scattered across the Witwatersrand basin. This approach not only allows for gold recovery but also contributes to environmental cleanup and land rehabilitation.

DRDGOLD is currently in a transitional phase, moving from its “old Ergo” operations to a new phase of growth. The company has successfully mined out the initial 190 million ton resource at Ergo and is now working on extending the life of mine by an additional 15 years. Simultaneously, DRDGOLD is expanding its Far West Gold Recoveries operation, aiming to double its throughput.

To support this growth, DRDGOLD is making significant capital investments, planning to spend around 70% of its current market capitalization on new infrastructure over the next few years. Importantly, the company intends to fund this primarily through operational cash flows, demonstrating the robustness of its business model.

A key aspect of DRDGOLD’s strategy is its focus on sustainable and environmentally friendly mining practices. The company is investing heavily in renewable energy, including a 60 megawatt solar plant and 160 Mwh battery storage system. This not only ensures reliable, affordable electricity but also aligns with the company’s goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030.

From a financial perspective, DRDGOLD has established a track record of consistent dividend payments, having paid dividends for the past 17 years. The company typically aims for a dividend yield in the range of 3-5%, making it attractive for income-focused investors.

DRDGOLD’s profitability is closely tied to the gold price, particularly in South African Rand terms. The company benefits when gold prices are high and the Rand is relatively weak, as it produces in Rand but sells in dollars.

For investors, DRDGOLD offers a unique value proposition. It provides exposure to gold price movements, a consistent dividend income, strong ESG credentials, and potential for future growth. The company’s focus on sustainable practices and environmental remediation positions it well in an investment landscape increasingly concerned with ESG factors. While the investment thesis for DRDGOLD is compelling, investors should be aware of certain risks. These include gold price volatility, operational risks associated with tailings reprocessing, potential regulatory changes in South Africa, and execution risks related to the company’s growth strategy.

As CEO Neil Pretorius states, “We take away a lot of the tension in investing in a gold stock because we don’t dig new holes, we fill existing holes.” This encapsulates DRDGOLD’s unique position at the intersection of gold mining and environmental remediation.

In conclusion, DRDGOLD represents an interesting opportunity for investors seeking exposure to gold with a sustainable twist. Its unique business model, growth plans, and environmental focus set it apart in the mining sector. However, as with any investment, potential investors should carefully consider the risks and conduct thorough due diligence before making an investment decision.

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  • @Makewayproduction

    Great interview. I'm invested in both DRD and Jubilee Metals. Looks like this quarter could be spectacular. Share price now broken resistance and finally playing catch up! Would love an interview with Leon from JLP please? Lots happening with Copper in Zambia.

  • @user-hb2ku5oq5r

    Chile needs this kind of experience to clean mining waste and this way to have a better life quality to communities as well as to mining players there¡¡Thank you¡¡

  • @user-hb2ku5oq5r

    Good news for environment globally¡¡Congrats guys¡¡

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