WHO’S WHO » GOLD GROUPS
With 20 gold mines and 118m-ounces in the ground worth $158bn, Colorado-based Newmont is sitting on the world’s largest gold reserve
Having bought Goldcorp for $10bn this year, Newmont is due to produce 6 to 7m ounces in 2019, vs 5.6m for Barrick and 2.8m for Kinross
Founded as a copper company by American financiers almost a century ago, Newmont is now known as the grand old lady of the mining world
Newmont’s earnings in 2018; emphasising profits ahead of production, Goldberg has a reputation for delivering predictable dividends
Newmont's CEO Gary Goldberg sat down for dinner at the Four Seasons hotel in New York earlier this year. Opposite was Mark Bristow, Barrick Gold's free-wheeling chief executive, known for red wine and triple espresso. Despite being smaller in size, Bristow was on a run of deals and was very publicly pushing for a $42bn takeover of Newmont. “These companies pay these guys a lot of money,” VanEck fund manager Joe Foster told Reuters. “They need to find a place in the middle.” By the end of the evening, Goldberg had folded Newmont's largest operations into Barrick's neighbouring mines in Nevada, handing Barrick control. The dinner defused the mayhem of the largest hostile bid that gold has ever seen… »
Above: Banking has gone from “dull” to “something worse”, says Newmont’s chair Noreen Doyle; Goldberg at a mine opening in South America; Newmont’s mines in Nevada (Photos: Newmont)
If Newmont needs an ally in the banking world, it has one in non-executive chair Noreen Doyle, an Ivy League-educated American (with an Irish passport) who went into banking in the 1970s and spent four decades skipping lunch in favour of a sandwich at her desk, rising to become chair of Credit Suisse in London.
Truly transatlantic, Doyle has served on dozens of boards, from New York-based think tanks to British defence contractors expanding in the US. Not easily ruffled (and some way short of the cutting edge when it comes to tech), her forte is steering divergent groups towards consensus »
Thomas Palmer was already managing 85 per cent of Newmont’s workforce when the board announced he would become its next CEO. True to Newmont's conservative culture, he has maintained a low profile inside its American headquarters, reversing a decline in production as chief operating officer at the world’s largest gold company. Managing investors is a different task.
In Australian mining circles, Palmer is well known: his father was one of the best-respected executives at Rio Tinto, where the younger Palmer spent 20 years, ironing out bottlenecks in its iron ore division, only leaving when prices tanked in 2013 »
When a rockslide the size of a massive earthquake hit Rio Tinto's Bingham Canyon copper mine in the US in 2013, the company promoted its top troubleshooter, Rob Atkinson, to co-ordinate the rebuild.
Costing $5m per day, the news knocked $1bn off Rio’s earnings and $2bn off its shares, but remote-controlled bulldozers were moving within three days, working round the clock, building a kilometre of new roads, whilst 20 new trucks were built onsite. Before the end of the year, Bingham Canyon was producing 8 per cent more copper than before the collapse. Having studied at Strathclyde in Glasgow »