AngloGold Ashanti has revealed that it has appointed its current CFO, Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan (Venkat) as the company’s new CEO effective immediately.Venkat has been with AngloGold Ashanti for nine years. He was the CFO at Ashanti Goldfields until that company’s merger with AngloGold Limited in May 2004, creating what is now AngloGold Ashanti. Shortly after the merger he became CFO of the combined entity and joined the board in 2005. Venkat had also previously been a director of corporate reorganisation services at Deloitte & Touche in London.
“We’re extremely pleased to have an executive of Mr. Venkatakrishnan‘s calibre to lead AngloGold Ashanti through the next phase of its development. He will enjoy my personal support and the full support of the board as he brings his extensive experience to complement the impressive depth of our operating and strategic talent,” said AngloGold Ashanti’s chairperson Tito Mboweni. More recently, following the departure of the former CEO Mark Cutifani, at the beginning of April 2013, Venkat has been joint interim CEO of the company, alongside Tony O’Neill. O’Neill will remain an executive director on the board and revert to his role as executive vice president: business and technical development. Venkat will also remain CFO of AngloGold Ashanti until further notice. A global search for a new CFO has been initiated. Venkat has an extensive knowledge of the company and its international portfolio of assets, as well as significant financial and capital markets expertise. In his role as CFO he has overseen funding for all of AngloGold Ashanti‘s operating activities, giving him a detailed knowledge of all of our mines and operating jurisdictions. He was the executive responsible for eliminating a 12Moz hedge book, generating significant value for the company, and was the key executive behind rebuilding the balance sheet through a series of successful debt financings that introduced long-term tenor and more favourable funding terms to the company’s credit profile.
“AngloGold Ashanti has a proud history, high-quality assets and a deep pool of world class talent,” Venkat said. “We will build on the good work done over the years in order to realise the value inherent in our portfolio, while placing a sharp focus on returns, margins and free cashflow.”Additional detail on the progress made with respect to AngloGold Ashanti‘s near-term operational objectives, outlined in February, will be provided at the presentation of the first-quarter results on May 13. Venkat will work with his executive team in the coming months to define the company’s approach to realising value for shareholders.