Mining and Heavy Industries

BHP chairman race whittled to four

Four names remain in the hunt to replace Jac Nasser as chairman of mining giant BHP Billiton, as the company’s board prepares to meet in Santiago, Chile, to make its decision.

The AFR this week reported that three current directors of the mining giant – Lindsay Maxsted, Malcolm Broomhead, and Ken MacKenzie – were firming up as three of the top candidates to replace Nasser, with “possibly a single outsider” added to the mix.

The board will reportedly meet in Santiago, the capital of Chile, later this week, to hold a “French-style” run-off election to decide the successful candidate.

MacKenzie remains the reported front-runner in the contest.

MacKenzie – whose name has been brought in a number of sources including The Australian and Reuters – is well regarded by his peers, and won multiple top chief executive awards during his decade-long stretch as the top dog at Amcor.

Amcor, a multinational packaging company based in Victoria, rewarded MacKenzie with a $22.3 million payout when he retired from the business in April 2015.

The presence of a potential single outsider in the race for BHP chair, alongside three existing directors (MacKenzie, Broomhead and Maxsted), is somewhat surprising, given the miner reportedly commissioned a search for an outside candidate that initially yielded 1200 potential choices.

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