Iamgold agrees board changes with activist investor RCF

Canadian miner Iamgold and 5.2% shareholder US-based RCF Management have reached an agreement on leadership changes at the company. There had been a public row between the two, which led to concerns about a costly proxy battle. 

Nathan Richardson
Iamgold agrees board changes with activist investor RCF

Maryse Belanger, David Smith and Ian Ashby have been appointed to the board of directors of the mid-tier gold mining company - and Belanger has been appointed chair, with immediate effect, Iamgold said February 14. 

On February 2, Iamgold argued that "several overreaching and self-interested" demands from RCF, including Belanger being appointed chair, would have resulted in the shareholder taking de facto control of the company. 

"It is the responsibility and mandate of the board of directors, not a recent 5.2% shareholder, to elect its chair. RCF's demands that Ms Belanger be immediately installed as chair, without meeting all of the board members, exposed an alarming disregard for good governance," Iamgold said at the time. 

"After due consideration, based on background research and in particular commentary of RCF, the board became increasingly concerned that Ms Belanger was not sufficiently independent from RCF to serve as the chair," Iamgold added on February 2. 

The moves followed Iamgold's president and CEO Gord Stothart's resignation in January, which was followed by the retirement of chair Don Charter on January 30. 

Richard Hall has stepped down from the board, while Ronald Gagel will resign following the announcement of the company's year-end results. Tim Snider will not stand for re-election. 

Belanger has over 35 years of experience with gold companies globally. From July 2016 to July 2019, she was president, COO and director of Atlantic Gold Corporation. She is currently director of Pure Gold, as well as an active board member of Equinox Gold and Sherritt International, Iamgold noted. 

Smith, who also has 35 years of experience of financial and executive leadership, served as CFO and EVP of Finning International from 2009 to 2014. He also served as CFO and VP of Ballard Power Systems from 2002 to 2009, the company added. 

Ashby served as president of iron ore for BHP Billiton between 2006 and 2012, when he retired from the company, Iamgold said. 

Iamgold traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange at C$3.73/share on February 14, which was up 1%. The company's share price had seen a generally downward trend from late last year through to January. It fell from C$4.05/share on December 25 to C$3.1/share on February 1. 

The company had a market capitalisation of C$1,779 million. 

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