The top 5 mining companies became cashflow positive in 2014 and the industry as a whole is expected to do so this year. Difficult cost structure reorganizations of the past two years are beginning to produce results. Roland Berger believes that 2015 marks year one of the new mining reality. Companies need to decide which role they want to play in a more subdued yet more stable mining market.
These challenges are discussed in this study, Mining rebound: why 2015 is the perfect year to prepare your mining operations for the next cycle, which highlights how mining operators can prudently invest their scarce resources for best returns.
As in any other process industry, operating a mine requires long-term, large-scale investment and capacity management, keeping in mind long-term returns and consistent investor remuneration. "Companies in the chemical, metal or oil and gas industry all follow a similar business development approach and seek to optimize their value chain positioning. Miners however, had an embarrassment of riches fomented by BRIC's pervasive growth forecasts. Following a three-year restructuring period it is time to pause and assess how well this turnaround phase has positioned operations for the next phase and what could be done to further improve their competitive positioning," says Roland Berger Partner, Serge Lhoste, a lead author of the study.