Anglo American Platinum named Natascha Viljoen as its first female chief executive officer.
Viljoen, currently group head of processing at parent Anglo American, will take over from current boss Chris Griffith when he leaves in April, according to a statement Thursday from Amplats, as the company is known.
She steps in at an exhilarating time for the industry amid a breathtaking rally in palladium, which has surged 41% already this year to fresh records. The company itself is in a strong position, having closed and sold higher-cost mines under Griffith. Profit last year more than doubled and Amplats announced a special dividend on Monday.
“I am fortunate to inherit a business in such a strong position,” Viljoen said. “Chris Griffith has reshaped our PGMs portfolio to be fit for the future and I believe we now have an opportunity to re-imagine how we operate.”
Amplats shares have gained 88% in the past 12 months, as the company also benefited from a jump in prices of rhodium, as well as a weaker rand.
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