The third Greek on Forbes list

Glen­core ex­ec­u­tive Telis Mis­takidis joins the ranks of the world’s wealth­i­est peo­ple

Kathimerini English - - Focus - BY VAN­GE­LIS MANDRAVELIS

Up un­til this year, the Forbes list of the world’s wealth­i­est peo­ple in­cluded two men of Greek de­scent: Yian­nis Lat­sis at num­ber 219, with a for­tune of $4.5 bil­lion, and Filip­pos Niar­chos at num­ber 459, with $2.5 bil­lion. Next year’s list, how­ever, will in­clude an­other Greek mag­nate, Telis Mis­takidis, who owns 6 per­cent of Glen­core, the multi­na­tional min­ing and com­modi­ties trad­ing com­pany head­quar­tered in Baar, Switzer­land, which was re­cently listed on the Lon­don and Hong Kong stock ex­changes with a cap­i­tal­iza­tion of $59 bil­lion.

Glen­core, more­over, is the first com­pany in 25 years to vie for a spot in the FTSE 100 di­rectly af­ter be­ing listed, ac­cord­ing to the Lon­don Stock Ex­change. The re­sult of this dy­namic open­ing was that cer­tain Glen­core ex­ec­u­tives saw them­selves be­come bil­lion­aires al­most overnight.

The 49-year-old Mis­takidis, co-di­rec­tor of Glen­core’s zinc, cop­per and lead unit, was among them.

Globetrotter

Born in Italy, ed­u­cated in the United King­dom and now a res­i­dent of Switzer­land, the glo­be­trot­ting Mis­takidis seems un­com­fort­able with the bil­lion­aire la­bel. Plus, he told Kathimerini in a re­cent e-mailed in­ter­view, “the se­nior peo­ple at Glen­core are locked in for a num­ber of years as part of the IPO. Even if we wanted to, we can­not sell any of our shares at present. What we have is wealth on pa­per only.”

Nev­er­the­less, that Mis­takidis it seems

will be ranked on the Forbes list for 2012 at num­ber 317, with a for­tune of $3.6 bil­lion, while it is also es­ti­mated that he will be mak­ing an ad­di­tional $60 mil­lion from this year’s div­i­dends alone.

Glen­core ini­tially started as a pure trad­ing com­pany. We have evolved into a sig­nif­i­cant pro­ducer of com­modi­ties our­selves and pro­duc­tion now ac­counts for about half our prof­its.

This busi­ness model is unique to Glen­core and it works well. It gives us se­cu­rity of sup­ply and en­ables us to see and re­act to day-to­day de­vel­op­ments in the com­modi­ties mar­kets.

We now have world-class min­ing and farm­ing as­sets across the com­modi­ties we han­dle. For ex­am­ple, Glen­core owns the largest and high­est-grade cop­per de­posit in the world. So we are re­ally ex­cited about the prospects go­ing for­ward, es­pe­cially at a time when de­mand is grow­ing and sup­ply is strug­gling to keep up.

This scarcity is a re­sult of mas­sive global un­der­in­vest­ment in mines over the last 20 years – there was not too much de­mand for com­modi­ties as the in­dus­tri­al­ized economies of the USA, West­ern Europe and Ja­pan had fin­ished been built. Com­mod­ity prices were flat or fall­ing for many years, pro­duc­ers were los­ing money or barely staying sol­vent.

Now, over the last few years, we have been see­ing the emer­gence of the economies of coun­tries like China and In­dia, where pop­u­la­tions are not in the hun­dreds of mil­lions but in the bil­lions. These coun­tries are now be­ing built as huge pop­u­la­tions want to move to the cities and en­joy lives like we have in the de­vel­oped coun­tries. As well as hous­ing they need in­fra­struc­ture: power plants, power lines, roads, rail­ways and air­ports. As a re­sult, the re­quire­ments for re­sources are and will be that much big­ger and of such a large scale that pro­duc­tion is now caught short and will strug­gle to catch up.

In­vest­ing in Greece

Glen­core does busi­ness in Greece sup­ply­ing com­modi­ties and we are happy with all our coun­ter­parts in that. Some years ago we looked at in­vest­ing in what was then Cas­san­dra Mines in Halkidiki and we have been look­ing at Larco Nickel. We would of course look to in­vest if the right op­por­tu­nity arose.

Telis Mis­takidis owns 6 per­cent of multi­na­tional min­ing and com­modi­ties trad­ing com­pany Glen­core.

will be lo­cated to the north of the city, on a part of the coast that once hosted in­dus­tries such as tex­tile pro­ducer Peiraik­iPa­traiki and the Ladopou­los pa­per fac­tory.

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