The Phaserl


Sam Walsh: no ‘bazaar sale’ at Rio Tinto

In his first interview since taking over at the mining giant, Rio Tinto’s CEO talks about cutting costs and why he won’t launch a ‘bazaar sale’.

by Emma Rowley, The Telegraph:

He may be giving his first interview as Rio Tinto’s chief executive, but Sam Walsh has his elevator pitch well honed.

“A sudden appointment for someone who was running Rio’s largest business, the iron ore business. An operations background, both within Rio and the car industry before that. But a very heavy focus on delivery, on strategically positioning the business,” he rattles off.

It is understandable that he is keen to map out the story clearly. His predecessor, Tom Albanese, under whom he worked as iron ore chief, was forced out in January by vast $14bn (£9bn) writedowns on purchases gone bad.

Walsh, a genial Melbourne man, takes over at the FTSE 100 mining giant – the world’s biggest after BHP Billiton – at a time when falling commodity prices, ballooning costs and project overruns have left shareholders clamouring for better from the industry.

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