This past year saw no major global flare up’s, no dramatic wars, a sort of grey year that provoked no major reactions, and got none. Our industry seems to be in a benign phase too, several major projects are on hold and nobody is rushing to fund the pool of Juniors either, despite some terrific portfolios they hold. The gold price we are told will continue to bounce between $1100 and $1300 an ounce, but we cant put this all down to the gold price, most of the rest of the industry seems afflicted too.
What is it then? Dare I hazard a controversial statement and attribute a good deal of this to the lethargy that seems to pervade our industry from time to time. Indecision breeds indecision, risk becomes taboo, inertia stifles momentum.
Everyone has an opinion, forgive me for having voiced mine, but more importantly, what is to be done about it, who will do it, and how? Ironically we at APT saw a major increase in both the number and value of enquiries throughout the year, with a particularly strong upward swing in the last three months of 2013. This is absolutely against global trend, very welcome for sure, but let’s try to understand why. One very interesting statistic to emerge is that conversion of enquiries to actual sales is by far the highest in the smaller sector, and this is increasing dramatically. This sector is where the risks are higher, the pre-qualification of resource more difficult, but perhaps this is being outweighed by the lower capital required. I have another theory to add – this is where the highest grade, and the highest potential for success exists.
Yes, ‘potential’ is the operative word, but this is where APT comes through with a package to reduce the risks and increase that potential. By keeping entry capital levels low, the risk, or rather the exposure is diminished. In keeping the operating costs way down, the profitability is increased. What is special, if not unique to the APT product range is that we have endeavoured and achieved low capital and operating cost right across the range, including the small entry level where most of the high grade opportunities exist. We believe this is a winning formula that drives our ‘let your project fund itself’ initiative by allowing the project to grow through easily attainable sequential steps, all supplied by APT.
The APT R&D and Design team have been very busy and we will be unveiling a number of new products during 2014 to support your very stout efforts to make this your winning year. It is indeed possible, and you will find us eager and willing to assist.
Our very best wishes to you all.