Glencore boss kicks off succession race
THE long-standing boss of Glencore has fired the starting gun on a three to fiveyear succession race among the commodity giant’s bright young executives as he confirmed his plans to step down in the early 2020s.
Ivan Glasenberg told investors that he is eyeing four candidates within the FTSE 100 miner who show the potential to fill his role after an almost 20-year tenure.
Mr Glasenberg’s succession would be only the third time that a new chief executive has taken the helm of Glencore in almost 50 years. He took charge of the commodities giant from Willy Strothotte in 2002, eight years after founder Marc Rich was ousted.
“I have my eye on a few guys,” Mr Glasenberg said, expressing a preference for a 45-year-old successor.
“Do I see any women in that pack? No. But in three or four years there could be.” The Glencore veteran also unveiled a management shakeup, which felled the group’s long-time copper kingpin.
Aristotelis Mistakidis, who is also a billionaire Glencore shareholder, will be replaced as head of copper trading by Nico Paraskevas. Glencore is currently the subject of an ongoing inquiry by the US Department of Justice into its copper dealings in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Mr Glasenberg denied that the move was linked to investigations and said Mr Mistakidis had been talking about a leadership transition for some time. “He has decided to retire and pass on the baton,” he told reporters.
The overhaul includes Glencore’s coal boss Peter Freyberg who was appointed to a new position heading industrial mining assets.
Mr Glasenberg said the company plans to spend $5.2bn on shareholder buybacks for 2018, despite slightly weaker cash flows forecasts for the second half of the year. Shares climbed 3.7pc to 300.8p yesterday.