Incitec Pivot CEO Jeanne Johns told the company's annual general meeting in Melbourne on Friday the "accelerating adoption of premium technology by the mining industry is driving strong demand for our electronic detonators and unique emulsion delivery systems".
Core business unit Dyno Nobel, which produces about 54 million pounds of packaged explosives and more than 1.2 million tonnes of ammonium nitrate a year, grew electronic detonator sales in Australia by 54% in fiscal 2019. In the Americas it expanded premium emulsion sales by 34% year-on-year. Dyno Nobel claims the combination of its Delta E emulsion delivery system and DigiShot electronic detonators is an "unrivalled premium technology offering in the market" that would ultimately "link to a full technology solution using digital control and automation".
Johns said a single-shot blast fired in the past week with more than 8,100 detonators was believed to be a world record.
Dyno Nobel Asia Pacific and Dyno Nobel Americas generated A$2.56 billion of Incitec Pivot's total $3.92 billion sales in FY19.
"The fundamentals underpinning the Australian explosives market, remain strong," she said.
"The [Dyno Nobel Americas] explosives business is expected to continue delivering earnings growth in FY20, underpinned by stronger volumes and efficiencies.
"The accelerating adoption of premium technology by the mining industry is driving strong demand for our electronic detonators and unique emulsion delivery systems.
"Our technology is helping our mining customers improve their environmental impact, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, delivering better safety outcomes and improving productivity."
Mining explosives business revenues and earnings are being driven by gold, base metals and coal activity, though the latter is predicted to be flat in the US in 2020.
Incitec Pivot traded up to A$3.70 in November but finishes this week at $3.25, similar to where it started 2019. The company's market value is $5.22 billion.