Polaris Minerals Corp. reported that, during the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2013, its Orca Quarry operation loaded 15 ships carrying in excess of 1,060,000 tons, a new record for quarterly shipments. This is in sharp contrast to 2010, the low point of the recent recession, when the company loaded 18 ships through the full year and recorded sales of 1,280,000 tons.
The company has appointed Richard A. Williams as director, business development for its U.S. marketing and distribution subsidiary. Williams is an experienced concrete engineer and marketing professional based in the greater Los Angeles area who will provide technical expertise in design for projects where the premium quality of the Orca Quarry sand and gravel can offer cost effective solutions.
The company has also begun placing initial orders for equipment to be used berthing vessels at its terminal site in the Port of Long Beach and anticipates bringing the first phase of this facility into operation around mid-year 2014. During December 2013, the company and its exclusive shipping contractor agreed to amend the contract of affreightment for shipments to California to provide for the carriage of joint cargos with another BC shipper and to lower the annual commitment level.
“The level of shipments in the fourth quarter was further evidence of the continuing improvement in our principal U.S. markets as underlying sales increased compared with last year and inventories that had been drawn down during the third quarter of 2013 were replenished,” said Herb Wilson, president and CEO. “We are very pleased that the newly amended shipping contract now reflects our business as it is today and provides an excellent framework for the future.”
He continued, “The Long Beach area has a number of significant infrastructure projects slated and it is essential that our sand and gravel is available locally in order to compete for these opportunities. We are delighted to have secured the services of Dick Williams, a well-known and widely respected concrete engineer, who will bring his considerable expertise to bear in specifications for Orca materials. The company plans to develop the Long Beach terminal site in two phases as sales gradually increase, the financing for this development having been secured through last June's equity issue.”