|RAMACO RESOURCES REPORTS SECOND QUARTER 2023 RESULTS|
LEXINGTON, Ky., Aug. 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Ramaco Resources, Inc. (NASDAQ: METC, METCB, "Ramaco" or the "Company"), a leading operator and developer of high-quality, low-cost metallurgical coal, today reported financial results for the three months and six months ended June 30, 2023.
SECOND QUARTER 2023 HIGHLIGHTS
MARKET COMMENTARY / 2023 OUTLOOK
Randall Atkins, Ramaco Resources' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer commented, "During the second quarter, we announced two potentially transformative milestones in our CORE Resources holdings, as well as in Ramaco Resources.
First, on the rare earth front, in early May we announced that our Brook Mine near Sheridan, Wyoming may contain the largest unconventional deposit of REEs in the United States, which are considered vital to the nation's strategic defense and energy transition. Recently, our Board approved to spend roughly $2.5 million for further development mining which we will start in the fourth quarter. Additionally, our Exploration Target has increased by almost 50% to now 0.9 - 1.2 million tons of TREOs.
Also, based on ongoing chemical ICP testing, we now believe that 23% of deposits contain the primary magnetic rare earth oxides of Neodymium, Praseodymium, Dysprosium, and Terbium. Adding in secondary magnetic elements moves this total to roughly 30%. Lastly, we recently engaged several experienced rare earth consulting firms, including SRK Consulting, to complete an Initial Assessment & Economic Analysis, as well as a Prefeasibility Study, which we hope to have in preliminary form later this year.
Second, in late June our CORE Resources Common Stock was distributed to our existing shareholders. We felt that the share price for companies operating in the coal industry generally trade at a marked discount to other forms of energy or materials companies. Our expectation was that if the income from these CORE Resources assets were valued separately, they might trade at a much higher multiple than income from the METC coal assets. The results would seem to support our view. Since its issuance METCB has traded up by over 65%, is set to pay its first dividend next month and has an effective yield above 6%, based on our forward outlook. It now trades at a roughly 16 x multiple of Enterprise Value to EBITDA, versus METC which continues to trade at a roughly 2-3 x multiple. On a combined basis, including both METC and METCB, our overall market cap has increased by roughly $120 million or almost 30%.
Turning to a review of the second quarter in our core metallurgical coal business, we were faced with continuing combined challenges of price declines, soft sales markets and ongoing inflationary pressures. To add further issues, our two rail lines, the NS and CSX continued their prior under-performance by failing to ship roughly 85,000 tons toward the end of the quarter, which will now move to the third quarter. On the pricing front, U.S. high-vol A indices averaged 25% less in the second quarter compared to the first quarter. Currently, prices to date in the third quarter are down another 10% from the prior quarter average.
Although there are economic pronouncements of a "soft landing" from Federal Reserve tightening which began in March 2022, the steel markets continue to show muted strength in both pricing and utilization figures. As we have often said, met coal is a proxy for steel. Steel is a proxy for a nation's GDP. This ongoing market contraction has been felt both in domestic and international markets and has not yet shown signs of abating in the near term. However, longer and even medium term, the fundamentals of the metallurgical coal business remain strong from the continued structural imbalance of demand and supply factors. Near term the market seems to be looking for signs of a market catalyst to reverse downward pricing trends. It is always difficult to call a market bottom, but the current netback pricing levels have that feel as they approach the marginal cost of production for many, especially higher cost, producers.
In commenting on Ramaco's second quarter results, we specifically suffered from a decline in three general metrics. We hope all are corrected in the back half of the year, which will especially show in the fourth quarter. The specific impacts were as follows:
While we cannot control sales, pricing and markets, we can arguably control production growth and costs. On the latter two fronts, there are a number of company-specific drivers that should help catalyze our next phase of growth. We look forward in the second half of this year to increasing both our overall met coal production, especially at our Berwind mine, as well as enjoying growth in overall processing capacity at Elk Creek.
Specifically on the production front, the first section at the Berwind No. 1 mine will complete development production in weeks. The second section is expected to be in full production later in the third quarter. The Maben surface and highwall mines both are also continuing to increase production. Overall, we are still guiding to fourth quarter production levels at an annualized run rate of over 4 million tons, with quarterly sales also expected to be over one million tons. The increase will help us reduce costs by spreading them across a larger number of produced tons.
Lastly, in late July the upgraded Elk Creek preparation plant reached its full potential processing capacity of 3 million tons, up 50% from 2 million tons. This processing increase will allow us to reduce the inventory position mentioned above. In sum, these two combined factors should translate into lower cash mine costs and meaningfully higher sales figures, with both expected to be triggered in the fourth quarter.
Strategically, we now have the opportunity to potentially have two strong business lines where we have some unique advantages. On our core metallurgical coal front, we are still the fastest growing U.S. producer, operating with low costs, low debt and very limited long-term liabilities. We produce exclusively in the metallurgical coal space, which is the one area of the current industry which we believe has the best long-term prospects.
On the REE front, we have been dealt a singular hand of cards with the discovery of what we hope to soon be the nation's newest rare earth mine. We start with a prolific multi-decade deposit base containing a preponderance of the most valuable of these critical elements contained in what has been called the largest unconventional deposit in the country. We will move to seize this opportunity with dispatch, balanced with financial prudence and diligence. We have also made strides in advancing some unique carbon products that can be manufactured from coal/carbon ore, and which could have substantial long-term application in direct air capture and battery technology.
Pursuing all of these new initiatives could propel Ramaco on a long-term transformation into becoming a different form of technology company, with businesses in both critical rare earth mineral and metallurgical coal production, alongside novel advanced carbon product and material manufacture. In closing, these are exciting times for Ramaco."
Key operational and financial metrics are presented below:
SECOND QUARTER 2023 PERFORMANCE
In the following paragraphs, all references to "quarterly" periods or to "the quarter" refer to the second quarter of 2023, unless specified otherwise.
Year over Year Quarterly Comparison
Overall production in the quarter was 876,000 tons, up 32% from the same period of 2022. The Elk Creek complex produced 605,000 tons, up 26% from 482,000 tons last year, while the Berwind and Knox Creek Mining complexes increased to 271,000 tons in the quarter, up 47% from the same period last year. Total sales were 715,000 tons during the quarter, up 23% from 584,000 tons in the second quarter of 2022. Total sales were negatively impacted by roughly 85,000 tons due to transportation-related delays.
Quarterly pricing was $163 per ton on Company produced coal sold, which was 24% lower compared to $215 per ton in the second quarter of 2022. Company produced cash mine costs excluding transportation and idle mine costs were $109 per ton sold, which was 3% higher than for the same period in 2022. Cash mine costs at Elk Creek were $101 per ton sold during the quarter, up modestly from cash mine costs of $100 per ton during the same period of 2022. The increase in costs was due to continued inflationary pressures, as well as the large inventory build on the back of the aforementioned transportation issues. Specifically, overall company wide cash cost per ton sold of $109 came in much higher than cash cost of production of $103 per ton. We anticipate cash costs per ton sold to decline modestly in the second half of 2023 as second half of 2023 sales are anticipated to grow meaningfully from first half of 2023 levels.
As a result of the lower realized price and inflationary headwinds, cash margins on Company produced coal were $54 per ton during the quarter, down from $109 per ton in the same period of 2022, based on non-GAAP revenue (FOB mine) and non-GAAP cash cost of sales.
Sequential Quarter Comparison
Overall second quarter production was up 42,000 tons to 876,000 tons compared with the first quarter of 2023, as new mines ramped up production. However, total sales volume declined 6% from the first quarter of 2023 due to the transportation delays discussed previously.
The realized price of $163 per ton during the second quarter was down from $185 per ton in the first quarter 2023 reflecting lower price market conditions. Second quarter cash costs of $109 per ton on company produced coal compared to $105 per ton in the first quarter of 2023. As a result, cash margins on Company produced coal were $54 per ton during the second quarter, down from $80 per ton in the first quarter of 2023, based on non-GAAP revenue (FOB mine) and non-GAAP cash cost of sales.
BALANCE SHEET AND LIQUIDITY
As of June 30, 2023, the Company had liquidity of $62.8 million, consisting of $33.9 million of cash plus $28.9 million of availability under our revolving credit facility. This compared to liquidity of $49.1 million as of December 31, 2022.
Compared to December 31, 2022, accounts receivable increased by $17.8 million, and inventories increased by $22.5 million. We expect a meaningful decline in inventory in the second half of 2023, especially in the fourth quarter, on the back of both improved rail service and the 50% increase in processing capacity at the Elk Creek preparation plant.
Second quarter capital expenditures totaled $24.5 million. This was up modestly from the first quarter 2023, but down meaningfully from capital expenditures of $34.1 million in the prior year period.
The Company's effective quarterly tax rate was 25%, excluding discrete items. For the second quarter of 2023, the Company recognized income tax expense of $2.5 million. While the Company anticipates an overall tax rate of 20-25% in 2023, cash taxes are expected to be minimal.
The following summarizes key sales, production and financial metrics for the periods noted:
ABOUT RAMACO RESOURCES
Ramaco Resources, Inc. is an operator and developer of high-quality, low-cost metallurgical coal in southern West Virginia, southwestern Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania. Its executive offices are in Lexington, Kentucky, with operational offices in Charleston, West Virginia and Sheridan, Wyoming. The Company currently has three active metallurgical coal mining complexes in Central Appalachia and one rare earth and coal mine near Sheridan, Wyoming in operation but not yet in production. In May 2023, the Company announced that a major rare earth deposit of primary magnetic rare earths Neodymium, Praseodymium, Terbium, and Dysprosium was discovered at its mine near Sheridan, Wyoming. Contiguous to the Wyoming mine, the Company operates a research and pilot facility related to the production of advanced carbon products and materials from coal. In connection with these activities, it holds a body of roughly 50 intellectual property patents, pending applications, exclusive licensing agreements and various trademarks. News and additional information about Ramaco Resources, including filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, are available at https://www.ramacoresources.com. For more information, contact investor relations at (859) 244-7455.
SECOND QUARTER 2023 CONFERENCE CALL
Ramaco Resources will hold its quarterly conference call and webcast at 9:00 AM Eastern Time (ET) on Wednesday, August 9, 2023. An accompanying slide deck will be available at https://www.ramacoresources.com/investors-center/events-calendar/ immediately before the conference call.
To participate in the live teleconference on August 9, 2023:
Domestic Live: (800) 274-8461
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
Certain statements contained in this news release constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements represent Ramaco Resources' expectations or beliefs concerning guidance, future events, anticipated revenue, future demand and production levels, macroeconomic trends, the development of ongoing projects, costs and expectations regarding operating results, and it is possible that the results described in this news release will not be achieved. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside of Ramaco Resources' control, which could cause actual results to differ materially from the results discussed in the forward-looking statements. These factors include, without limitation, risks related to the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic, unexpected delays in our current mine development activities, the ability to successfully ramp up production at the Berwind and Know Creek complexes, the timing of the Elk Creek preparation plant to come online, failure of our sales commitment counterparties to perform, increased government regulation of coal in the United States or internationally, the further decline of demand for coal in export markets and underperformance of the railroads, the expected benefits of the Ramaco Coal and Maben acquisitions to the Company's shareholders, and the anticipated benefits and impacts of the Ramaco Coal and Maben acquisitions. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made, and, except as required by law, Ramaco Resources does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. New factors emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for Ramaco Resources to predict all such factors. When considering these forward-looking statements, you should keep in mind the risk factors and other cautionary statements found in Ramaco Resources' filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), including its Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. The risk factors and other factors noted in Ramaco Resources' SEC filings could cause its actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement.
Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures
Adjusted EBITDA is used as a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure by management and external users of our financial statements, such as industry analysts, investors, lenders and rating agencies. We believe Adjusted EBITDA is useful because it allows us to more effectively evaluate our operating performance.
We define Adjusted EBITDA as net income plus net interest expense; equity-based compensation; depreciation, depletion, and amortization expenses; income taxes; certain non-operating expenses (charitable contributions), and accretion of asset retirement obligations. Its most comparable GAAP measure is net income. A reconciliation of net income to Adjusted EBITDA is included below. Adjusted EBITDA is not intended to serve as a substitute for GAAP measures of performance and may not be comparable to similarly-titled measures presented by other companies.
Non-GAAP revenue and cash cost per ton
Non-GAAP revenue per ton (FOB mine) is calculated as coal sales revenue less transportation costs, divided by tons sold. Non-GAAP cash cost per ton sold is calculated as cash cost of coal sales less transportation costs and idle mine costs, divided by tons sold. We believe revenue per ton (FOB mine) and cash cost per ton provides useful information to investors as these enable investors to compare revenue per ton and cash cost per ton for the Company against similar measures made by other publicly-traded coal companies and more effectively monitor changes in coal prices and costs from period to period excluding the impact of transportation costs, which are beyond our control. The adjustments made to arrive at these measures are significant in understanding and assessing the Company's financial performance. Revenue per ton sold (FOB mine) and cash cost per ton are not measures of financial performance in accordance with GAAP and therefore should not be considered as a substitute to revenue and cost of sales under GAAP. The tables below show how we calculate non-GAAP revenue and cash cost per ton:
Non-GAAP revenue per ton
Non-GAAP cash cost per ton
We do not provide reconciliations of our outlook for cash cost per ton to cost of sales in reliance on the unreasonable efforts exception provided for under Item 10(e)(1)(i)(B) of Regulation S-K. We are unable, without unreasonable efforts, to forecast certain items required to develop the meaningful comparable GAAP cost of sales. These items typically include non-cash asset retirement obligation accretion expenses, mine idling expenses and other non-recurring indirect mining expenses that are difficult to predict in advance in order to include a GAAP estimate.
SOURCE Ramaco Resources, Inc.
|8/8/2023 4:42:00 PM