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Masters takes top roles at Albemarle

Specialty chemicals company Albemarle (NYSE: ALB) has elected director J Kent Masters as chairman, president and CEO, effective immediately, to replace Luke Kissam who is retiring for health reasons.
Masters takes top roles at Albemarle Masters takes top roles at Albemarle Masters takes top roles at Albemarle Masters takes top roles at Albemarle Masters takes top roles at Albemarle

J Kent Masters is Albemarle’s new chairman, president and CEO

Staff reporter

The company said Kissam would stay on through June in an advisory capacity to ensure an orderly transition.

He would also remain on the board and stand for re-election at the annual meeting on May 5.

Masters joined Albemarle's board in 2015, having been a non-employee director of Rockwood Holdings from 2007-2015, when it was acquired by Albemarle.

"I look forward to continuing to work with the board of directors and the entire Albemarle team to position the company for long-term success," he said.

The company also said board member James O'Brien had been appointed lead independent director as part of the transition.

Albemarle announced an increased dividend in February, marking its 26th consecutive year of raising dividends, with the earlier 25-year milestone earning the company's entry to the S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats Index.

The company late last year had outlined a robust outlook for long-term lithium demand fundamentals, despite price weakness.

It has anticipated its 2020 performance to be lower year-over-year, based on expected lower results from lithium and flat-to-slightly lower results from bromine specialties, partially offset by flat to slightly higher results from catalysts.

It's set to release its first quarter results after market close on May 6.

Albemarle shares lost 2.39% yesterday to close at US$60, towards the lower end of its one-year range of $49-$99.39, capitalising it about $6.4 billion.