Kumba’s Chris Griffith 
Johannesburg, South Africa — 20 July 2012 – Global mining giant Anglo American has reshuffled management at its two biggest South African units a day after its underperforming platinum arm revealed it was headed for a big fall in profits.

Reuters quotes an Anglo American statement released here as saying that Neville Nicolau has stepped down as chief executive of Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), the world’s largest platinum producer, and will be replaced by the head of another group company, Kumba Iron Ore.

Chris Griffith, chief executive of Kumba since 2008, will take over at Amplats from 1 September, inheriting a company which has been hit by weak platinum prices and subdued sales.

The reshuffle by group chief executive Cynthia Carroll comes just a day after Amplats warned that it expected interim profit to fall by as much as 78%. The industry has also been battered by safety stoppages, above-inflation increases in input costs and labour disputes.

Griffith will be replaced at Kumba by Norman Mbazima, who has been the head of Kumba’s thermal coal business. The Amplats CFO will serve as interim chief executive until Griffith’s arrival.

Shares of Amplats were down more than 2% at R419.87 yesterday afternoon.

The unit is 80% owned by Anglo American which is undertaking an operational review of Amplats that it is expected to conclude later this year. Analysts expect the review to recommend the closure of some higher-cost deep shafts, as well as some sales or exits from joint ventures with rivals.

South Africa is home to 80% of known world platinum reserves.

Source: Reuters. For more information, click here.