May 17, 2020

Mining management: BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Vale

BHP Billiton
Rio Tinto
5 min
Mining management: BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Vale

BHP Billitonis a leading global resources company with a goal of creating long-term shareholder value through the discovery, acquisition, developmen...


BHP Billiton is a leading global resources company with a goal of creating long-term shareholder value through the discovery, acquisition, development and marketing of natural resources. The company is among the world’s largest producers of major commodities such as iron ore, coal copper and uranium, including interests in nickel and potash as well as conventional and unconventional oil and gas.

How is BHP’s management team leading the industry?

Australia’s biggest and most successful global company, BHP is an enterprise that continues to be the nation’s biggest taxpayer by far and is a storage of future wealth for just about every Australian with a superannuation account and a retirement to pay for. With BHP recently shedding a number of its non-core assets into a new business called South32, the company may be setting a trend others will follow.

2014 Revenue: $67.2 billion

2014 Profit: $13.8 billion

Production notes: nine percent increase in production compared from 2013

Chief Executive Officer – Andrew Mackenzie

Mackenzie has over 30 years of experience in oil and gas, petrochemicals and minerals. He joined BHP Billiton in 2008 as Chief Executive Non-Ferrous and commenced as Chief Executive Officer in 2013. Prior to BHP, Mackenzie was Chief Executive of Diamonds and Minerals at Rio Tinto, and held a number of senior roles at BP, including Vice President for Technology and Engineering, and Vice President for Chemicals.

Chief Financial Officer – Peter Beaven

Joining BHP Billiton in 2003, Peter Beaven was appointed Chief Financial Officer in October 2014 after Graham Kerr was appointed Chief Executive Officer of South32. Beaven was previously the President of Copper and prior to that President of Base Metals, President of Manganese, and Vice President and Chief Development Officer for Carbon Steel Materials. He holds a Bachelor of Accountancy from the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa and is a Chartered Accountant.

Director – Jac Nasser

Jac Nasser was appointed Director of BHP Billiton in 2006 and Chairman in 2010. Before joining the company, he spent the better part of his career with Ford Motor Company holding various leadership positions, including serving as President and Chief Executive Officer of Ford from 1998 to 2001. In addition, external appointments for Nasser include non-executive director and chairman of SABMiller plc since 2014 and July 2015 respectively, non-executive director and senior independent non-executive director of Marks and Spencer Group plc from 2008 and 2012 respectively until March 2015.


Rio Tinto is a leading global mining and metals company focused on finding, mining and processing the Earth’s mineral resources in order to maximize value for our shareholders. The company has been in operations for over 140 years and specializes in commodities such as aluminum, copper, diamonds, coal, iron ore, uranium, gold and industrial minerals, with operations in more than 40 countries across six continents. 

How is Rio Tinto’s management team leading the industry?

Rio Tinto continues to combat today’s challenging market conditions with a clear and effective strategy that focuses on six key drivers: a world-class portfolio, quality growth, operating and commercial excellence, balance sheet strength, capital allocation discipline and free cash flow generation.

2014 Revenue: $47.7 billion

2014 Profit: $6.5 billion

Production notes: Rio set production records for iron ore, bauxite and coal.

Chief Executive Officer – Sam Walsh

Following 20 years in the automotive industry at General Motors and Nissan Australia, Sam Walsh joined Rio Tinto in 1991. Before becoming chief executive in 2013, Walsh held a number of management positions during his career at Rio, including chief executive of the Aluminum group from 2001 to 2004, chief executive of the Iron Ore group from 2004 to 2009 and chief executive, Iron Ore and Australia from 2009 to 2013.

Chief Financial Officer – Christopher Lynch

Lynch has nearly 30 years’ experience in the mining and metals industry. Prior to joining Rio Tinto, Lynch was chief executive officer of the Transurban Group, and his career includes seven years at BHP Billiton. He also spent 20 years with Alcoa Inc. where he was vice-president and chief information officer, as wella s chief financial officer Alcoa Europe in Switzerland. Mr. Lynch became director of Rio Tinto since 2011 and chief financial officer since 2013.

Chairman – Jan du Plessis

Du Plessis was appointed chairman in 2009. The South African and British citizen became group finance director of Compagnie Financière Richemont, the Swiss luxury goods group, in 1988. In 2004, he was appointed chairman of British American Tobacco plc, a position which he held until 2009.


Vale is global mining company with a mission to transform natural resources into prosperity and sustainable development. Headquartered in Brazil, Vales operates in over 30 countries and specializes in iron ore and nickel, including other commodities such as copper, coal, manganese, ferroalloys, fertilizers, cobalt and platinum group metals.

How is Vale’s management team leading the industry?

Vale adopts management procedures compatible with the regulations of the markets in which it operates and seeks to guarantee international standards of transparency. At Vale, innovation continues to be the foundation for its development, which helps to create and achieve their vision of being the most important natural resources company in the world by creating long-term value. 

2014 Revenue: $37.5 billion

2014 Profit: $657 million

Production notes: Became the world’s largest producer of nickel in 2014

Chief Executive Officer – Murilo Ferreira

With over 30 years’ experience in the mining sector, Murilo Pinto de Oliveira Ferreira has spent his entire career at Vale. He commenced his professional career in 1977 as a financial and economic analyst with Vale, and was appointed as president and CEO in May 2011.

Chief Financial Officer – Luciano Siani

As Vale’s Chief Financial Officer, Luciano Siani has an extensive professional experience in the areas of finance, capital markets and strategic planning. Before being appointed CFO, Siani held the positions of global director of Strategic Planning and global director of Human Resources and Governance for the company.

Executive Director – Galib Chaim

Galib Chaim took up the post of executive director, Capital Projects in November 2011. He has worked at Vale and its subsidiaries since 1979, notably in capital project management, international project implementation and corporate relations with government and private sectors. He graduated in engineering at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais and obtained an MBA in business management at Fundação Getúlio Vargas, both in Brazil.

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Jun 29, 2021

Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations

battery metals
2 min
Vale’s $150mn investment in operations at Thompson, Manitoba will extend mine life by 10 years

Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.

Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel

The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.

“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.

“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”

Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba

Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.

“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.

“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”

The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history.  Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.

“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.

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