It is difficult to get a good look at the performance of the Lonmin assets as it awaits finalisation of the takeover bid by Sibanye-Stillwater. The increased palladium and rhodium prices in the basket of platinum group metals (PGMs) that SA miners produce have come at a critical time for the industry. A decade of subdued platinum prices, which have been overtaken by electricity, labour and other input costs, has left the South African PGM industry in a difficult position, unable to spend capital on optimal growth, forcing assets sales and shaft closures, and the loss of jobs. It’s against this backdrop that a number of efforts at Lonmin, the world’s third-largest platinum miner, raised billions of rand from shareholders to no avail. It has been unable to complete vitally important projects such as the partially built K4 shaft, which promised to turn around the company’s fortunes. Lonmin was up against the wall and more than 30,000 jobs were at risk. Sibanye came riding in as the wh...

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