The Board of Kimberley Diamond Company NL has announced the appointment of its long-standing Finance Director, Mr Karl Simich, to the position of Managing Director to head up its executive management team and oversee its growth strategy into the future as a leading independent Australian diamond producer. Mr Simich will oversee all operational and financial aspects of Kimberley's activities. The Board of Kimberley also today announced the appointment of its Group Accountant, Mr Matthew Fitzgerald, to the role of Chief Financial Officer, with overall responsibility for the financial and accounting operations of the business. Mr Simich has over 20 years of international experience in the international resource sector and in the management and administration of publicly listed companies, including in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Mr Simich is a Chartered Accountant and a member of Securities Institute of Australia and has completed post-graduate studies in business and finance. He has been Finance Director of Kimberley since it listed on the ASX in 1994, with overall responsibility for the Company's financial and accounting administration during its evolution to become a leading independent diamond producer at the Ellendale Project in Western Australia. With his appointment as Managing Director of Kimberley, Mr Simich has tendered his resignation as Chairman of ASX-listed international diamond company, Namakwa Diamond Company NL (ASX: NDC). He has also stepped down from his directorships of Namakwa Diamond Company and Marine Produce Australia Ltd (ASX: MPA) and resigned from his position as joint Company Secretary of Kimberley to focus his full attention on his new role. Mr Miles Kennedy will remain as Kimberley's Executive Chairman, and will continue to focus on developing and maintaining relationships with international and Australian capital markets and other significant stakeholder groups. In addition, Mr Kennedy will focus on diamond sales and downstream beneficiation of the Company's "fancy yellow" diamonds with the head of marketing, Mr Nick Yiannopoulos. He will also work on corporate strategy and development. Mr Fitzgerald, who joined the Kimberley Group as Group Accountant in July 2003, is a Chartered Accountant who previously held the position of Senior Accountant in the Assurance and Advisory Division of accounting firm, KPMG. His main focus in this role was the provision of audit and financial advisory services to ASX listed companies in the resources sector. Operational changes were also made at the Ellendale operations. Mr Bill Crossley, General Manager Operations, will now be site based. Mr David Jones has been appointed Chief Geologist in charge of both Kimberley's and Blina's exploration and mine geology. Mr Justin Clarke has been appointed as Production Manager in charge of all diamond recovery operations for both Kimberley and Blina. Dr Tor Theunissen has been appointed to head up Human Resources. In welcoming the new appointments, Mr Kennedy said they would enhance the Company's senior management team as it moved into a particularly important phase with the completion of major expansion projects at both the Ellendale 4 and 9 operations. Kimberley is focused on the completion of the major expansion projects at Ellendale 4 and 9 during next 3-4 months, which represents a key transition period for the Company as it lays the foundation for a major increase in carat production from 2006/07 onwards. The completion of these projects during the September 2006 quarter will underpin the Company's status as a profitable, top-5 Western World diamond producer, in conjunction with a landmark exploration program covering one of the world's most under explored diamond fields.
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