Ivanhoe Mines Ltd. is considering eliminating the chief-executive role and leaving founder Robert Friedland to lead the company as executive co-chair for the foreseeable future, according to a mining-industry source.
On Wednesday, Ivanhoe announced that its long-time CEO Lars-Eric Johansson will retire at the end of June, and is giving up the role of president immediately. Former Kinross Gold Corp. chief financial officer Tony Giardini was named as president but Ivanhoe didn’t name a successor CEO.
With the impending exit of Mr. Johansson, Ivanhoe’s upper-management tier could soon closely resemble Barrick Gold Corp.’s old structure. Toronto-based Barrick operated for a few years with a president but no CEO.
The top strategic and management decisions were made by its executive chairman John Thornton. (Barrick brought back the CEO role in January after it acquired Randgold Resources Ltd.)
Mr. Friedland is expected to function in a similar way at Ivanhoe, making the major strategic decisions in consultation with co-chair Yufeng Sun, said the source, who was granted anonymity by The Globe and Mail because they were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.