Driven by an increase in gold sales by 52 percent, Petropavlovsk, the Russian gold exploration company, has reported revenue of US$1.3 billion for the full-year 2011, which is more than double the group's revenue of US$612 million in 2010.

The group also reported a rise of 29 percent in the average realised gold sale price and a 374 percent growth in IRC's revenue.

For the year ended December 31, 2011, the group's EBITDA stood at US$0.6 billion, which is three times higher than in 2010. Shares of the companay rose as much as five percent at 0800 am BST.

"This is the first Annual Report in which we can measure our financial success in billions of dollars: we more than doubled our total revenue to US$1.3 billion in 2011. Our success can be explained in part by economies of scale, since we are now using much bigger equipment at Pioneer, our flagship operation, but I believe that a far more significant explanation is the fact that we are continuing to optimise the way we use such large scale equipment. The learning process involved a comprehensive review of operations followed by the development of a new planning and scheduling regime as well as better operating practices and these have borne fruit.2012 has started well for the Group and the prospects for the US dollar price of gold, in my opinion, remain good. I say this because I believe that there is little sign of a lasting solution to the financial turmoil that marked the previous year. I remain confident that we will have another year of continued production growth," said Peter Hambro, Chairman of the group.

Petropavlovsk's profit per share rose more than 10 times to US$1.24 from 2010. The board of directors have proposed a final dividend of £0.07 per share which is anticipated to result in the payment of £13.2 million.

The group's attributable gold production is currently estimated at 680,000oz for FY 2012, which represents an increase of c.8 percent over the total attributable gold production for FY2011.