Fortescue Metals Group chief financial officer Stephen Pearce will leave the company at the end of the year.

Lilleyman joins FMG as Pearce resigns

Friday, 23 September, 2016 - 14:51

Fortescue Metals Group has started the search for a new chief financial officer after Stephen Pearce handed in his resignation to pursue an international role, on the same day the iron ore giant announced the appointment of a new director of operations.

Former Rio Tinto executive Greg Lilleyman will begin in the new role from the start of next year.

Mr Lilleyman previously served in a number of senior roles at Rio, including as president of Pilbara operations and group executive of technology and innovation.

“Greg brings a wealth of industry knowledge with a personal style and approach strongly aligned with Fortescue’s values and culture,” FMG chief executive Nev Power said.

“His extensive experience in leading safety and operational excellence, combined with his thorough knowledge and passion for technology and innovation, provides for the further development of Fortesuce’s strong operational and cost performance.”

The iron ore miner also announced Mr Pearce would resign from the company at the end of the year to take on a new position overseas, believed to be with Anglo American.

Mr Pearce served as CFO of the company since 2010, and was appointed to its board in June.

Mr Power congratulated Mr Pearce’s new career move.

“Among his many contributions, Stephen has been a key part of a tightly focused and disciplined approach to generating strong operating cash flows and evolving the balance sheet,” Mr Power said.

“The strength of the highly capable team of senior leaders across finance, procurement and shipping is testament to Stephen’s contribution to Fortescue.”

Chairman Andrew Forrest said Mr Pearce left FMG with its future in very talented, capable hands.

“Given the great progress on cost and debt reduction, and Stephen advising his keenness to pursue an international operations and finance role, this is an appropriate time for Stephen to move out of Fortescue to pursue those objectives,” he said.

“He leaves with my best wishes and as a hallmark of every good leader, has a highly capable team in place to flawlessly continue the work of increasing operational competitiveness, reducing cost and repaying debt.”

Mr Pearce’s departure from FMG follows news in April that its development director Peter Meurs had resigned to take up an international full-time role with the Mormon church.

FMG shares closed 3.8 per cent lower to $4.96 each.