Rockwell aims to grow MOR production footprint


The diamond mining and development company has a mid-term target to increase monthly production volumes of quality gravel processed at Middle Orange River (MOR) to 500,000m3.

“Our fiscal 2014 results are beginning to reflect the operational turnaround of the company and its core focus on the MOR region of South Africa. From an operational perspective, these results also show that our MOR focus has gained traction,” said Rockwell chief executive and president, James Campbell.  

“During fiscal 2014, we delivered two new mines, namely Saxendrift Hill Complex and Niewejaarskraal, both funded internally from cash reserves and this more than doubled our MOR production capacity. Having met our short-term target to have three producing mines in the MOR, our production profile is now more flexible and sustainable.”


The sale of diamonds for the year ending 28 February 2014 increased to 41.1 million Canadian dollars from 27.1 million Canadian dollars for the year ended 28 February 2013.

“Our revenue increased 39 per cent year-on-year, underpinned by a 52 per cent increase in diamond sales. These improvements have been consistent each quarter over the last two years, as we have now reported seven consecutive quarters of dollar denominated revenue growth,” Campbell said.

(READ MORE: Rockwell Diamonds Q3 revenue up amid growth in diamond demand)  

“We believe that the implementation of our earthmoving vehicle upgrade programme should unlock further benefits as we improve the fleet overall utilisation to match our production capacity and renew the equipment to lower our maintenance expenses while improving availabilities.”

Operating profit before amortisation and depreciation grew to 5.9 million Canadian dollars in 2014 from one million Canadian dollars in 2013.

Rockwell however reported a loss before taxation of 10.4 million Canadian dollars in the 2014 fiscal year from a loss of 13.9 million in 2013 and a basic and diluted loss per share of 21.30 cents in 2014 from a loss of 22.55 cents in 2013.

“Looking forward, we remain firmly focussed on our medium term target to process 500,000m3 per month of quality gravels. We are conducting contiguous exploration of existing resources at the Saxendrift Extension property to increase the current life of mine, further leveraging our invested mining infrastructure at Saxendrift,” said Campbell. 

“Mining at Niewejaarskraal, where the processing rate approached the monthly nameplate capacity of 100,000m3 at fiscal year-end, is aimed at upgrading the inferred resource to the indicated level. At the same time, we continue to review our options to bring the Wouterspan property to fruition, with a preference for an internally funded and phased approach.”