JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICAH
Sibanye stock fell 16% after the gold mining company suggested it could sell assets, enter into fixed-price agreements, or offer new shares for sale. Sibanye has been paying dividends to its investors since its founding in 2013. That tradition was halted last year, and CEO Neal Froneman said no dividends may be paid next year as well. The company reported $370 million in losses, last year, compared to $30 million in profits the previous year. Sibanye’s mines were profitable; losses were attributed to devaluations of assets, occupational healthcare claims, restructuring, and transaction costs. Another factor was the strengthening of the local currency against the dollar. Analysts are concerned Froneman may be too ambitious in acquiring struggling mines and branching into palladium and platinum. Last year, the company’s net debt, almost $2 billion, was 2.6 times earnings and almost as high as the company’s current market value. Then, last December, Froneman entered into negotiations to buy yet another struggling mine.