Teck CEO Don Lindsay looks to longer-term plans as miner rebounds – by Brent Jang (Globe and Mail – December 12, 216)


VANCOUVER — It has been heartening this fall for Don Lindsay to watch ships in the Port of Vancouver as they transport steel-making coal headed for Asia. The coal ships plying the waters of Burrard Inlet have again become a welcome sight for Teck Resources Ltd.’s chief executive officer, who has a panoramic view of the inlet from the company’s head office in downtown Vancouver.

The market for metallurgical coal – a raw material that is used in the steel-making process – began edging up earlier this year and started surging even higher in September.

Canada’s largest diversified mining company has staged a remarkable comeback in 2016. It hasn’t been solely lucky timing owing to rising commodity prices. Teck managed to bounce back by maintaining a healthy balance sheet through paying down debt and preserved its core assets while avoiding any issuance of shares, Mr. Lindsay said in an interview on Teck’s 34th floor of a Vancouver office tower.

Buoyed by a surprising recovery in coal prices, Teck is in stellar financial shape heading into 2017. Zinc and copper markets have rallied, too, though to a lesser extent than coal.

Teck shares, which ended 2015 at $5.34 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, closed at $29.37 on Friday – soaring 530 per cent so far in 2016. The optimism at Teck is in stark contrast to the beginning of 2016, when doom and gloom surrounded the company and the three main commodities that it produces.

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