Bloomberg News

Antofagasta Raises Chairman’s Pay After Losing Quarter of Value

April 17, 2012

Antofagasta Plc (ANTO), whose Chief Executive Officer Marcelo Awad unexpectedly resigned last month, increased payments to Chairman Jean-Paul Luksic about 6 percent last year after losing a quarter of its value in London trading.

Luksic, who took over as interim CEO after Awad quit, got $3.5 million including benefits and bonuses, compared with $3.3 million a year earlier, the company said in its annual report.

Antofagasta, based in London, posted an 18 percent jump in net income to $1.24 billion in 2011, missing the $1.26 billion average estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Its dividend fell to 44 cents a share, including a 24-cent special payment, from $1.16 with a $1 one-time component a year earlier. Antofagasta fell 25 percent to 1,215 pence in London last year.

The company, which last year increased copper output by 23 percent to 640,500 metric tons, plans to produce 700,000 tons in 2012. Awad left March 7 after delays at the Esperanza project in Chile forced Antofagasta to cut an output forecast for last year to 620,000 to 640,000 tons, from 715,000 tons previously. The company plans to produce 280,000 ounces of gold this year.

“The increase in the copper and gold production compared with 2011 reflects the impact of Esperanza operating in a steady-state of production for a full year, following the completion of the main ramp-up process during 2011,” Luksic said in the report. Antofagasta expects copper prices to remain high on a lack of concentrate supply, according to the report.

“Macro-economic uncertainty means that prices in the short term are likely to remain volatile,” Luksic said. “Long-term market fundamentals remain positive for copper, with inventories remaining at low levels by historic standards.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Firat Kayakiran in London at fkayakiran@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at jviljoen@bloomberg.net


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