Lonmin: No decision on size, shape of restructuring

The company says its immediate aim is to ramp up production after a crippling five month strike.

FILE: Mine workers walk to a meeting point at Lonmin's Marikana Mine. Picture: EWN.

LONDON - Platinum producer Lonmin said it has not made a decision on the size and shape of a business restructuring and its immediate aim is to ramp up production after a crippling five-month platinum strike that hit the sector this year.

"No decisions, about the size and shape of any restructuring of the business, have been made," the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Industry sources said on Monday that the company is planning a business restructuring, which will include the shut down of some of the company's shafts and job cuts.

"Lonmin's immediate focus following the five-month strike is to achieve a safe ramp up of production in order to rebuild the business and restore profitability," Lonmin said, pointing out that the ramp up was progressing "better than planned".

In June, the company warned that "restructuring had become inevitable" in the wake of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu)'s five-month long strike.

Amcu warned of consequences should the platinum giant resort to job losses.

Lonmin raised $800 million to shore up its balance sheet in 2012 after it was hammered by a violent wildcat strike that killed dozens of people, but analysts say the company would struggle to get more funds from shareholders so soon.

Amcu's 2014 strike, the longest and costliest in South African history, also affected Lonmin's bigger rivals Anglo American Platinum and Impala Platinum.

Amplats has since said it plans to sell or spin off a number of the mines that were shut during the 2014 strike. Implats is expected to update the market on potential restructuring when it reports full-year earnings on Thursday.