Sam Walsh to retire from Rio Tinto board in July

01a06 sizedownsmall Sam Walsh to retire from Rio Tinto board in July03fbc sizeupsmall Sam Walsh to retire from Rio Tinto board in July
 Sam Walsh to retire from Rio Tinto board in JulyRio Tinto announced the retiring of its chief executive Sam Walsh on 1 July 2016. Walsh will be succeeded by Copper Coal chief executive Jean-Sébastien Jacques. To ensure a smooth transition, Jean-Sébastien will join the board and become deputy chief executive with immediate effect. Sam will retire as a director after almost seven years on the Rio Tinto board.

During more than three years on Rio Tinto’s executive committee, Jean-Sébastien has brought greater focus to the copper and the coal businesses. He has delivered a step-change in both safety and cash performance while significantly reducing costs. Prior to joining Rio Tinto, Jean-Sébastien worked for more than 15 years across Europe, Southeast Asia, India and the United States in a wide range of operational and functional positions in the aluminium, bauxite and steel industries.

Rio Tinto chairman Jan du Plessis said “Today’s announcement is the culmination of a comprehensive and deliberate executive succession process. The board has decided that J-S is the right person to lead Rio Tinto in an increasingly complex world filled with both challenges and opportunities for our industry.” He further noted that, “Jean-Sébastien is a very experienced executive with a demonstrated track record and brings a unique blend of strategic and operational expertise.”

Jean-Sébastien Jacques said “It is an honour and a great privilege to be given the opportunity to lead the company as we continue to develop the business and pursue the delivery of value for shareholders. The safety of all of our people across the world will remain a key focus and, together with Sam, I will take every opportunity over the next few months, to meet and listen to our shareholders, customers, employees and stakeholders, all of whom play an integral role in making this great company so successful.”

Sam Walsh noted, “I have been seriously fortunate to lead one of the world’s best companies. After 25 great and enjoyable years with Rio Tinto, now is the right time to pass the reins on to Jean-Sébastien. In his time at Rio Tinto, J-S has proven to be a standout performer as a leader in our business. I am very proud to have played my part, together with all of our employees around the world, in returning Rio Tinto to a position of industry leadership and strength.”

Chris Salisbury is appointed acting chief executive of the Copper Coal product group and will attend the Rio Tinto Executive Committee in this capacity.



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