ST BARBARA’s Simberi mine had a significant turn-around in the 2014-2015 financial year, helping its parent company to a statutory net profit after tax of A$39.7 million for the year.

Full year production of 377,387 ounces was a group record and exceeded the upper end of St Barbara’s full year guidance range of between 350,000 ounces and 370,000 ounces.

Company managing director Bob Vassie said St Barbara had acheived each of its objectives for the financial year, with the result a major improvement on its A$500.8 million loss in 2013-2014.

“We are well positioned as we start 2015-2016, with continued strong operating performance and promising growth opportunities at Gwalia and Simberi.”

Simberi had generated positive cash flows of A$13.9 million since December 2014, the group said in its end of year profit results, but this was not enough to turn around cash flows after capital expenditure, with the project still A$33,000 in the red at the end of the financial year.

Nonetheless, this was still an improvement on the A$60.4 million loss on the project recorded last year.

Production of 79,568 ounces of gold at Simberi for the year was the highest recorded since St Barbara acquired the operations in September 2012, with 49,635 ounces of this acquired in the second half of the year.

This led to total sales revenue from the project reaching A$112.5 million at an average achieved gold price of A$1,445 per ounce.

St Barbara said the improvement in mining performance was largely attributable to better equipment reliability and availability.