The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) went up by 0.2% today to 7,348 points.
Here are some of the highlights from the ASX:
Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX: EVN)
The Evolution Mining share price dropped around 5%. The ASX 200 gold miner released its quarterly update for the last period in FY21.
Evolution Mining said that in the three months to 30 June 2021, it produced 169,146 ounces of gold. This was achieved at an all-in sustaining cost (AISC) of A$1,239 per ounce.
Operating cashflow for the quarter was $212 million and net mine cashflow was $100 million.
Evolution Mining also committed to net zero emissions by 2050, with a 30% reduction of emissions by 2030.
Drilling has identified a new high-grade gold zone at Cue Joint Venture.
In FY21, Evolution Mining said that mine operating cashflow was $937 million. Net mine cash flow was $555 million. Group cash flow was $327 million.
The FY21 gold production was 680,788 ounces. That was within the original guidance of 670,000 to 730,000 ounces and 2% below the bottom end of its revised guidance of 695,000 to 710,000 ounces issued in April. The AISC for FY21 was A$1,215.
Evolution Mining’s board has approved the Cowal underground development, with a pathway to deliver more than 350,000 ounces per year.
The Red Lake transformation plan has been accelerated by the Battle North Gold acquisition. The plan of 200,000 ounces per annum at an AISC below US$1,000 per ounce by 2023 is on schedule with a pathway to gold production of over 350,000 ounces per annum.
The group mineral resources increased 74% year on year to 26.4 million ounces. The ore reserves increased 49% year on year to 9.9 million ounces.
It was the worst performer in the ASX 200 today.
Appen Ltd (ASX: APX)
There was no official news released from the business. However, the brokers at Citi said it might be a takeover target.
The Australian Financial Review reported that Citi said about Appen’s share price slump:
A key question regarding the recent downgrades is whether they are due to a structural issue (self-learning systems, in-sourcing, synthetic datasets etc.), competition or something else.
Our discussions suggest demand for human annotated training data is not structurally impaired and that ongoing growth is expected, with evolving regulations and data privacy laws as key tailwinds medium-term.
However, our discussions also point to slower growth for data annotation as the major tech companies develop better systems.
With the recent increase in M&A and given Appen’s position as a leader in the AI training data space as well as client exposure, we would not be surprised if Appen was a potential acquisition target for an IT Services or BPO firm.
We note Appen’s main competitor Lionbridge was acquired by Telus International for 16x – 20x EV/EBITDA versus Appen currently trading at 13x.
The Appen share price climbed around 3% today, making it one of the best performers in the ASX 200.
Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES)
The Wesfarmers share price came into focus after the Mt Holland lithium project received ministerial approval outlining the conditions that apply to the construction and operation of the lithium hydroxide refinery as part of the Mt Holland lithium project.
The Mt Holland lithium project has now received all critical approvals and construction and project development have commenced.