Pilbara Minerals delivers first profit on lithium boom

Image: The Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project. (Courtesy of Pilbara Minerals.)

Australian lithium miner Pilbara Minerals Ltd reported its first half-year profit on Wednesday as prices of the battery metal soared due to rising demand from the electric-vehicle industry.

Thin supply and a demand explosion spurred by the electric-vehicle revolution has sent prices of lithium surging in recent months, with current rates estimated to be eight times higher than year-ago levels.

“The result reflects continued improvement in lithium market conditions over the period, which has continued its strong momentum into the current half,” the company said.

Pilbara also said its chief executive officer Ken Brinsden would step down by the end of the year.

For the six months to Dec. 31, the company posted a net profit attributable of A$114 million ($82.31 million), compared with a loss of A$21.2 million a year ago.

Its shipments of spodumene concentrate came in at ‍170,228​ dry metric tonnes (dmt), compared with 114,239 dmt a year ago.

The company expects to produce between 340,000 and 380,000 dmt of spodumene concentrate for the full year.

($1 = 1.3850 Australian dollars)

(By Arundhati Dutta; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Aditya Soni)

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