AngloGold Ashanti sees positives in NYSE move

A worker pours gold at the AngloGold Ashanti mine at Obuasi, Ghana, in this file photo: Reuters

A worker pours gold at the AngloGold Ashanti mine at Obuasi, Ghana, in this file photo: Reuters

Published Apr 11, 2024


ANGLOGOLD Ashanti’s change of domicile from South to the US last year impacted the gold miner’s weighting on the JSE indices, in addition to a sell-off of as fund managers sought to rebalance their holdings in the company.

South Africa taxed AngloGold Ashanti as much as R4.18 billion for moving its primary listing from Johannesburg to the New York Stock Exchange.

This was in addition to a further R351 million in securities transfer tax.

AngloGold Ashanti said yesterday that its new corporate structure, listing and domiciling in the NYSE placed it “alongside its highest-rated global gold mining peers in the world’s largest capital market and source of most of the world’s investment” in gold mining companies.

This was helping it to create a strong platform “for shareholder value creation” over the long term.

However, in its annual report for 2023 released yesterday, the company said the re-domiciling and shift of its primary listing from the JSE had also caused disruptions for the company’s stock.

“It is important to note that this change was not without disruption, however, as it impacted AngloGold Ashanti’s weighting in certain indices, including the main index for South Africa’s JSE bourse, and likely caused selling as funds that track the index re-balanced their holdings to more closely mirror the benchmark,” it said.

Shares in AngloGold Ashanti were down by 10.09% in the past one year on the JSE to trade at R433.34 per share by 4pm yesterday afternoon.

Although it moved its domicile and primary listing to New York, AngloGold Ashanti has retained a corporate office and secondary listing in Johannesburg.

“We retain an important corporate office in Johannesburg that services many parts of our larger business, and a secondary listing on the JSE, in Johannesburg, which remains a deep and well-regulated capital market for us,” said AngloGold Ashanti’s CEO, Alberto Calderon.

Moreover, the gold miner is maintaining secondary listings on the JSE and in Ghana as this is where many of its shareholders remain.

The JSE listing was also helping the company retain its link to the key Africa region, “host to important production and future growth, and source of exceptional talent” for its business.

In 2023, Calderon was tasked to honour and advance AngloGold Ashanti’s legacy projects in South Africa where the company is investing $10m (R188m) over five years in various educational and rural development projects.

The group’s South African gold operations were sold to Harmony Gold in 2020, but the now New York-headquartered gold miner committed to continuing development projects at its former SA mining areas and those that supplied it with labour.

The miner also said it had made progress in 2023 to attain employment equity targets in South Africa, with about 94% of its staff being “local nationals” in South Africa currently.

In line with negotiations with the South African government for AngloGold Ashanti’s corporate restructuring exercise in 2023, at least two of its directors must be representatives from South Africa for the first five years from last year, and at least one thereafter.

In terms of capital projects, AngloGold Ashanti said in November that Phase 3 of the Obuasi Redevelopment Project had reached 82% overall completion during the period under review.

The project relates mainly to dewatering and refurbishing existing infrastructure to improve overall mining flexibility and access to the higher-grade Block 11 area in future years.

The company had also received a cash payment of $20m after agreeing to sell its 50% indirect interest in the Gramalote Project to B2Gold Corp for a total consideration of up to $60m.

The transaction closed on 29 September 2023, and payment of the balance was said to be dependent on project construction and production milestones.