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JSE- and NYSE-listed Gold Fields has appointed Chris Griffith CEO designate.
Griffith will succeed Nick Holland with effect from April 1.
Holland, who had been due to retire on September 30 after 13 years as CEO of the company, has agreed to retire six months earlier to facilitate the leadership transition.
"We are delighted that an experienced executive of Chris's calibre will join Gold Fields. He has deep-rooted operational mining experience and an impressive record of delivering safe operational performance and leading effective change.
"Creating value for shareholders is paramount but, at the same time, the environmental and social sustainability of our company and value creation for all stakeholders has taken on increased significance. We are confident Chris is the right person to take the business forward," says Gold Fields chairperson Cheryl Carolus.
Griffith was previously CEO of Anglo American Platinum (Amplats). He resigned from this position in April last year to pursue other career opportunities and is currently on gardening leave until March 31.
Before joining Amplats as CEO in 2012, he was CEO of Kumba Iron Ore - another Anglo American group company.
A graduate mining engineer from the University of Pretoria, he had joined Anglo American in 1990 from JCI.
The Gold Fields board also pays tribute to Holland's leadership at Gold Fields.
"Nick has defined Gold Fields as it is today; a global, highly profitable and sustainable company, which is widely considered a leader in its field. In 2008, two-thirds of our production came from South Africa; in 2020, approximately 90% emanated from outside of South Africa with all our mines highly mechanised and increasingly automated," Carolus points out.
"Above all, Nick prioritised safety and wellness at all our operations and, during his tenure, Gold Fields has seen a marked improvement in its safety record. At the same time, environmental, social and governance issues have been fully integrated into the day-to-day management of the business, further entrenching Gold Fields' vision of global leadership in sustainable gold mining.
"On behalf of the board and all our 17 000 employees, we want to thank you for the leadership you've shown over the past two decades and more. The Gold Fields of today is a testament to your vision, strategy and leadership."