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Taseko Reports First Quarter 2024 Operational Performance and $50 Million of Adjusted EBITDA

Press Release

May 1, 2024, Vancouver, BC – Taseko Mines Limited (TSX: TKO; NYSE American: TGB; LSE: TKO) (“Taseko” or the “Company”) reports first quarter 2024 Adjusted EBITDA* of $50 million and Earnings from mining operations before depletion and amortization* of $53 million, 38% and 29% higher than the same quarter in 2023.  Revenues for the first quarter were $147 million. Net income for the quarter was $19 million ($0.07 per share) and Adjusted net earnings* were $8 million ($0.03 per share).

In the first quarter, Gibraltar produced 30 million pounds of copper and 247 thousand pounds of molybdenum. Mill throughput in the quarter was 7.7 million tons, or 84,400 tons per day, processing an average grade of 0.24% copper. Total operating cash costs (C1)* for the quarter were US$2.46 per pound of copper.

Stuart McDonald, President and CEO of Taseko, commented, “Gibraltar operations performed generally in line with plan in the first quarter, generating strong margins on a realized copper sales price of US$3.89 per pound.  The operating team successfully completed a mill component replacement in January and following this maintenance downtime, mill throughput averaged 90,000 tons per day, 6% above the design capacity. The gradual transition to the Connector pit will continue over the next few months, and the in-pit crusher relocation is planned for the second quarter.”

“In late March we acquired the remaining 12.5% interest in Gibraltar and now own 100% of the mine.  This transaction is a real positive for Taseko, providing immediate cashflow and production growth. The acquisition cost is spread out over ten years, with the next scheduled payment in 2026, which allows us to focus our financial resources on Florence development.  As part of the transaction, we also acquired additional concentrate offtake rights and, with smelter treatment costs at record lows, the timing could not have been better. This additional offtake has now been sold at negative treatment costs, resulting in cost savings of $10 million in the second half of 2024,” continued Mr. McDonald.

“At Florence Copper, initial construction and wellfield development activities are progressing smoothly.  There are now three drill rigs operating on the commercial facility wellfield, with a fourth drill to be mobilized in May.  A total of ten new production wells have been drilled to date.  Site preparation and earthworks for the SX/EW plant area are also underway and construction of the plant is expected to begin later this quarter.  It is an exciting time for the Company as we move closer to commercial operations at Florence.

In April, we further strengthened our financial position through the successful refinancing of our senior secured notes.  The maturity of the notes has been pushed out to 2030, and the upsizing provides additional cash proceeds and financial flexibility.  With the bond refinancing complete, 100% ownership of Gibraltar, and the copper price today at US$4.49 per pound, our business is much improved from just a few months ago.” concluded Mr. McDonald.

*Non-GAAP performance measure. See end of news release

First Quarter Review

  • First quarter cash flow from operations was $59.6 million and net income was $18.9 million ($0.07 per share) for the quarter;
  • Earnings from mining operations before depletion and amortization* was $52.8 million, Adjusted EBITDA* was $49.9 million, and Adjusted net income* was $7.7 million ($0.03 per share);
  • Gibraltar produced 29.7 million pounds of copper for the quarter. Average head grades were 0.24% and copper recoveries were 79% for the quarter;
  • Gibraltar sold 31.7 million pounds of copper in the quarter (100% basis) at an average realized copper price of US$3.89 per pound;
  • Total operating costs (C1)* for the quarter were US$2.46 per pound produced;
  • On March 25, 2024, the Company completed its acquisition of the remaining 12.5% interest in Gibraltar, and now owns 100%. The Company paid $5 million on closing, with the remaining amounts payable over a 10-year period with the next scheduled payment in March 2026;
  • Construction of the commercial production facility at Florence is advancing with recent site activities focused on site preparations and earthworks for the commercial wellfield and plant area. Wellfield drilling commenced in February and ten new production wells have been drilled to date;
  • During the quarter, the Company received the first US$10 million deposit from Mitsui & Co. (U.S.A.) Inc. (“Mitsui”) for its copper stream financing and closed its US$50 million royalty financing with Taurus Mining Royalty Fund L.P. (“Taurus”). The Company had a cash balance of $158 million and has approximately $239 million of available liquidity at March 31, 2024; and
  • On April 23, 2024, the Company completed an offering of US$500 million aggregate principal amount of 8.25% Senior Secured Notes due May 1, 2030. A portion of the proceeds were used to redeem the outstanding US$400 million 7% Senior Secured Notes due on February 15, 2026. The remaining proceeds, net of transaction costs, call premium and accrued interest, are approximately $110 million.

*Non-GAAP performance measure. See end of news release


Operating Data (Gibraltar – 100% basis) Three months ended
March 31,
2024 2023 Change
Tons mined (millions)  22.8 24.1  (1.3)
Tons milled (millions)  7.7 7.1  0.6
Production (million pounds Cu)  29.7 24.9  4.8
Sales (million pounds Cu)  31.7 26.6  5.1

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Financial Data Three months ended
March 31,
(Cdn$ in thousands, except for per share amounts) 2024 2023 Change
Revenues  146,947  115,519  31,428
Cash flows provided by operations  59,574  27,999  31,575
Net income (GAAP)  18,896  33,788  (14,892)
Per share – basic (“EPS”)  0.07  0.12  (0.05)
Earnings from mining operations before depletion and amortization*  52,797  41,139  11,658
Adjusted EBITDA*  49,923  36,059  13,864
Adjusted net income* 7,728  5,088 2,640
Per share – basic (“Adjusted EPS”) *  0.03  0.02 0.01

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On March 15, 2023, the Company increased its effective interest in Gibraltar from 75% to 87.5% through the acquisition of a 50% interest in Cariboo Copper Corporation (“Cariboo”) from Sojitz Corporation. On March 25, 2024, the Company increased its effective interest in Gibraltar from 87.5% to 100% through the acquisition of the remaining 50% interest in Cariboo from Dowa Metals & Mining Co., Ltd. (“Dowa”) and Furukawa Co., Ltd. (“Furukawa”).

The financial results reported in this MD&A include the Company’s 87.5% proportionate share of Gibraltar mine income and expenses for the period March 16, 2023 to March 24, 2024 (prior to March 15, 2023 – 75%) and  100% of Gibraltar mine income and expenses for the period March 25, 2024 to March 31, 2024.

The Company finalized the accounting for the acquisition of its 50% interest in Cariboo from Sojitz and the related 12.5% interest in Gibraltar in the fourth quarter of 2023.  In accordance with the accounting standards for business combinations, the comparable financial statements as of March 31, 2023 and for the three months then ended have been revised to reflect the changes in finalizing the consideration paid and the allocation of the purchase price to the assets and liabilities acquired.

*Non-GAAP performance measure. See end of news release


Gibraltar Mine

Operating data (100% basis) Q1 2024 Q4 2023 Q3 2023 Q2 2023 Q1 2023
Tons mined (millions)  22.8 24.1  16.5 23.4 24.1
Tons milled (millions)  7.7 7.6  8.0 7.2 7.1
Strip ratio  1.7 1.5  0.4 1.5 1.9
Site operating cost per ton milled (Cdn$)*  $11.73 $9.72  $12.39 $13.17 $13.54
Copper concentrate
 Head grade (%)  0.24 0.27  0.26 0.24 0.22
 Copper recovery (%)  79.0 82.2  85.0 81.9 80.7
 Production (million pounds Cu)  29.7 34.2  35.4 28.2 24.9
 Sales (million pounds Cu)  31.7 35.9  32.1 26.1 26.6
 Inventory (million pounds Cu)  4.9 6.9 8.8 5.6 3.7
Molybdenum concentrate
 Production (thousand pounds Mo)  247 369  369 230 234
 Sales (thousand pounds Mo)  258 364  370 231 225
Per unit data (US$ per pound produced)*
 Site operating costs*  $2.21  $1.59 $2.10 $2.43 $2.94
 By-product credits*  (0.17)  (0.13) (0.23) (0.13) (0.37)
Site operating costs, net of by-product credits*  $2.04  $1.46 $1.87 $2.30 $2.57
Off-property costs  0.42  0.45 0.33 0.36 0.37
Total operating costs (C1)*  $2.46  $1.91 $2.20 $2.66 $2.94

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Operations Analysis

First Quarter Review

Gibraltar produced 29.7 million pounds of copper for the quarter. Copper production and mill throughput in the quarter were impacted by Concentrator #2 downtime in January for a planned major component replacement which reduced operating time by ten days.

Copper head grades of 0.24% were in line with management expectations. Copper recoveries in the first quarter were 79%, lower than the recent quarters due to lower head grades and increased milling of partially oxidized material.

A total of 22.8 million tons were mined in the first quarter. The strip ratio of 1.7 was higher than the recent quarters as stripping continues in the Connector pit, and 2.0 million tons of oxide ore from the upper benches of the Connector pit were also added to the heap leach pads in the period. There was 1.1 million tons in mill feed from ore stockpiles.

*Non-GAAP performance measure. See end of news release

Operations Analysis – Continued

Total site costs* at Gibraltar of $109.5 million (which includes capitalized stripping of $18.5 million) was comparable to the previous quarter.

Molybdenum production was 247 thousand pounds in the first quarter. At an average molybdenum price of US$19.93 per pound, molybdenum generated a by-product credit per pound of copper produced of US$0.17 in the first quarter.

Off-property costs per pound produced* were US$0.42 for the first quarter reflecting higher copper sales volumes relative to production volumes and additional trucking costs for concentrate movements compared to the same quarter in the prior year.

Total operating costs per pound produced (C1)* was US$2.46 for the quarter, compared to US$2.94 in the prior year quarter as shown in the bridge graph below:

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