Anglo to trim more costs

DIVERSIFIED miner Anglo American is planning to remove a layer of global management to reduce “overhead staff” by 25% and save $US120 million per annum.
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Anglo American CEO Cynthia Carroll

Blair Price

To implement these cost-saving measures, Anglo will create seven commodity business units, with its metallurgical coal management team to remain based in Australia and headed under Anglo Coal Australia chief executive Seamus French.

Anglo also aims to sell off a range of “non-core” assets, which include the companies Scaw Metals, Copebras and Catalao, along with its portfolio of zinc assets.

A team of five London-based directors will oversee the management restructure.

“I believe that these actions will position Anglo American well for sustained, profitable growth in the commodities we have identified as being the most attractive,” Anglo American chief executive Cynthia Carroll said.

“The portfolio changes we have announced are the logical next step in focusing the group on our core mining activities, enabling us to strengthen our balance sheet further.

“The de-layering creates the opportunity for a new generation of executive management to come through and I look forward to working with them.”

Anglo American chairman Sir John Parker said the restructure represented an important step in creating a more streamlined business, with enhanced focus on operational effectiveness and project delivery.

Meanwhile, Anglo’s Australian metallurgical coal output fell 9.4% year-on-year to 3.15 million tonnes in the September quarter as the company has made production cuts since the global financial crisis kicked in.

The company’s Australian thermal coal production was just 0.9% lower year-on-year to 3.61Mt, but its South African export thermal coal output gained 0.8% to 5.81Mt and its production for utility Eskom rose 7.3% to 10.4Mt.

Over in South America, Anglo’s thermal coal output fell 3.4% year-on-year to 2.84Mt in the September quarter.

Earlier this year, Anglo moved to cut 19,000 jobs across the group after 2008 profit fell 29% to $US5.2 billion.

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