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Ex-Anglo CEO Carroll says ‘conservative’ miners need more women

Industry needs to change; push gender diversity.

Mining is not only for men. Companies have to do more to push gender diversity, according to Cynthia Carroll, former chief executive officer of Anglo American, who says the industry needs to change.

“Companies should require, not ask that executives promote, recruit and include women,” Carroll said in an interview in Singapore. Heading the miner from 2007 to 2013, Carroll was Anglo American’s first female chief executive, and now sits on the boards of several companies, including Hitachi.

Mining remains male-dominated. In a survey of 30 companies, the Responsible Mining Foundation found “little or no evidence of efforts” to strengthen the gender balance of leadership and governance teams. Women also accounted for less than 5% of senior management at trading houses, Bloomberg has reported.

Global majors have urged and taken steps to ensure diversity in recent years. No 1 miner BHP Group in February boosted the number of women in its executive leadership team to 50%. The London Metal Exchange is also seeking to stamp out sexist entertainment that has long been a feature at some events during LME Week every fall. Still, change hasn’t been substantial, said Carroll.

“It’s a very, very conservative industry and it needs to change,” said Carroll. “They have got to be casting their net more broadly, and they’ve got to be looking at women.”

© 2019 Bloomberg L.P

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And obviously the lady’s hoping to get more women underground breaking rock… surely she doesn’t only mean she’d like more of them sitting around a heavy mahogany table in a plush office block all day, every day?

Wasn’t this the lady who pursued those expensive share buy backs at Anglos which wasted hundreds of millions of Rands and achieved nothing?

Back in the day, Anglos was the ultimate old boys club. Trouble is, the old boys were pretty darn smart and had balls to boot. To run a company that size successfully for 110 years or so takes some doing.

Along comes some genius who says we’ve got to break up the old boys club, and what better way to do it than to bring in a woman to head it up. Enter Cynthia Carroll.

We’ll, it didn’t take her 5 minutes to bring Anglos to its knees from which it’s still trying to recovery.

So thanks Cynthia, but as a former Anglo shareholder, I would strongly caution against any advice you might have to give on mining.

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