IGO appoints Ivan Vella as CEO

13th June 2023 By: Esmarie Iannucci - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Australasia

IGO appoints Ivan Vella as CEO

PERTH (miningweekly.com) – Battery metals major IGO has tapped Rio Tinto current aluminium CEO Ivan Vella as its new CEO and MD.

Rio on Tuesday confirmed that Vella would continue to lead the aluminium division until December this year, and that the company had started a process to identify a successor. In the meantime, Vella has stepped down from Rio’s Group executive committee with immediate effect.

“Vella has made a significant contribution during his 20-year career with Rio Tinto, holding senior positions across the aluminium, iron-ore, copper, and coal product groups, providing both operational and strategic leadership. We thank him for his contribution and wish him every success for the future,” said CEO Jakob Stausholm on Tuesday.

Vella’s appointment at IGO follows an extensive and rigorous global search process, which was initiated following the passing of IGO CEO and MD Peter Bradford in October of last year.

“After a rigorous process that considered many high-quality candidates from a number of different jurisdictions, we are delighted to have appointed Ivan to lead IGO through the next stage of our transformation,” said IGO chairperson Michael Nossal.

“Vella has a wealth of international experience across a range of commodities and markets, and has proven his aptitude in some of the most complex operating environments. Beyond just business performance, Vella has been committed to driving sustainable and responsible business practices within Rio Tinto. He has championed the company's efforts in environmental stewardship, social impact and governance, emphasising the importance of ethical conduct and community engagement. It is notable that Rio Tinto turned to Vella to rebuild their relationships with the Puutu Kunti Kurrama and Pinikura people (PKKP) in the wake of the Juukan Gorge tragedy.

“There are very few executives in the mining industry that have the breadth of knowledge, strategic capability, experience and passion that Vella has developed over his career. Most importantly, Vella shares the values and purpose-driven approach to the industry that has become the core of what IGO represents,” Nossal said.

“We are delighted to have been able to attract an executive of Vella’s calibre to join IGO, and look forward to his vision and leadership in steering the company through its next exciting phase of growth.”

Vella on Tuesday said he was thrilled to be given the opportunity to lead IGO.

The company’s purpose and values deeply resonate with me and IGO has positioned itself brilliantly to be at the forefront of the global transition to a green energy future. I am looking forward to playing a key role in this next stage of the company’s development,” he said.

“Beyond the current asset base, IGO has an impressive team of highly talented individuals. Together, they have built a highly regarded reputation for having an innovative and dynamic culture underpinned by a true commitment to a unique set of values. I am very much looking forward to spending time meeting and learning from everyone at IGO as we work together to take the business to even greater success in the future.”