Follow the leaders: This week’s executive movements

Keep up with the latest executive movements across the mining sector, including at Peabody Energy, IGO, Talga Resources and more.

Peabody Energy has named Darren Yeates as its new executive vice president and chief operating officer, effective November 1.

Yeates has been on the Peabody board of directors since February 2020 and will remain on the board as a non-independent director.

He has over 35 years’ mining experience and recently served as chief operating officer of MACH Energy Australia.

Other previous positions include chief executive officer of GVK Hancock Coal and 22 years in multiple positions with Rio Tinto, including acting managing director and chief operating officer for coal Australia.

At present, Yeates is a director of Emeco Holdings and is a former Stanmore Coal director.

He replaces Charles Meintjes who resigned from the company in September.


IGO non-executive director Neil Warbuton has stepped down from his role, effective immediately.

Warburton joined the IGO board in 2015 following the company’s acquisition of Sirius Resources and since then, has provided the company with input and guidance.

He leaves IGO to pursue other directorship and commercial opportunities and his re-election resolution has been withdrawn from the agenda of the IGO annual general meeting, which will be held on November 18.

IGO has started the recruitment process for a replacement director and is at an advanced stage of screening candidates from a broad range of backgrounds to diversity the board.

Subsequently, the process to identify a new chair is also progressing, following the news of current chairman Peter Bilbe’s planned retirement on or before the annual general meeting.

The company believes it will fill both Warburton and Bilbe’s roles before the end of the 2020 calendar year.


Talga Resources has appointed Martin Phillips as chief executive officer of its European operations.

This follows Perth-headquartered Talga’s progress to build a low-emission anode supply chain in Europe for greener lithium-ion batteries.

Talga is moving its Vittangi anode project towards construction, to start production of 19,000 tonnes per annum in 2023.

As the European chief executive officer, Phillips will focus on delivering Talga’s commercial and technical initiatives in the region, developing partnerships with Mitsui and other parties.

Phillips is the former commercial manager of Iluka Resources and other previous positions include engineering and management roles in battery recycling programs and smelting innovations at Mt Isa Mines.

He will also continue in his role of chief operating officer with Talga, overseeing its operations in the United Kingdom and Sweden.


Vango Mining is continuing its review and refresh of its company board and management, appointing a new independent non-executive director and reshuffling a former director.

Former CoalMont executive chairman Matthew Keegan joins the board as independent non-executive director, effective October 28.

He is a geologist with a background in operational and corporate roles spanning over 25 years, including as founding director of Iron Road, senior mining analyst at AME Mineral Economics and operational geology roles at Rio Tinto, Barrick Gold Corporation and Western Mining.

Executive director Zhenzhu “Carol” Zhang has moved from her role as an executive director to non-executive director.

Zhang joined the Vango board in August 2015 and has played a significant role in the growth of the company as a director and one of the company’s largest shareholders.

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