Rockwell Diamonds Inc. has announced that it is to close its Johannesburg head office in a cost-cutting measure. Following the closer, key senior executives will be transferred to the company’s Middle Orange River (MOR) operations on a full time basis. The closure is expected to save ZAR 7.9 million ($484.542).
In addition, a number of workers are expected to be laid off, although Rockwell has said it will “make every effort to minimize the number of retrenchments and re-deploy as many employees as possible.”
The move comes following a strategic and operational review, which took place in the last three months of calendar 2015 owing to falling levels of diamond recovery, grade and volumes processed, which the company said have made it challenging to achieve financial viability, growth and profitability.
"Our third quarter performance was driven by continued weakness in global diamond pricing which negatively impacted the balance sheet, and limited our ability to invest in increased processing capacity,” said CEO and president James Campbell.
"Operating performance has been adversely impacted by the declines in grade and overall sales values, and their impact on sales. Management and the board have however taken decisive action to place the company on a positive footing in order to meet its sustainable operations target of 500,000m3 processing.”
The company also announced the closure of the Saxendrift mine, which has reached the end of its economic life, by the end of February.