Merger plan speculation
GLOBAL mining giant Xstrata has appointed a new chairman amid speculation the shift will pave the way for a merger with commodities giant Glencore. News of the Xstrata board move came this week as the Swissbased metals and mining group continued its significant interests in Australia including numerous coal, zinc and copper operations. Chairman Willy Strothotte will retire at the group’s May AGM, to be replaced by former Vodafone boss, Sir John Bond. Strothotte is also the chairman of Glencore, which is preparing for its initial public listing. Xstrata is listed on the Swiss and London stock exchanges and its chief executive Mick Davis said that it was ‘‘ unsustainable’’ for both companies to be listed.