Gold Fields Ltd. has announced that Chris Griffith will step down from the Board of Directors and as CEO of Gold Fields, effective December 31, 2022. He was appointed CEO of Gold Fields in January 2021. Griffith led the company as it attempted the recent takeover bid for Yamana Gold, which ultimately fell through when Pan American Silver working with Agnico Eagle submitted a better offer.

“The board and I agree that the company’s strategy, including growing the value and quality of the portfolio, continues to be the right one, but we also felt that the Yamana setback should not be allowed to impede the company’s strategy,” Griffith said. “So, as CEO I felt that I should take responsibility and allow the company to move forward under new leadership unencumbered by the Yamana transaction.”

“We were all disappointed that the Yamana deal did not go through, as we felt it was a compelling deal which would have created a strong company and created value for all our shareholders,” Gold Fields Chairperson Yunus Suleman said.

Martin Preece, executive vice president of Gold Fields South Africa, has been appointed to lead the company as interim CEO. He joined Gold Fields six years ago and led a turnaround of South Deep, so the board feels he is well-placed to lead Gold Fields and its executive team.

“Disciplined capital allocation will remain a key focus for all our strategic decision-making as Gold Fields continues to implement its strategy,” Preece said.

“With South Deep poised to ramp up production and Salares Norte on track to deliver first gold by the end of the second quarter of 2023, Gold Fields is expected to continue delivering value for all our stakeholders.”

Gold Fields said South Deep is on track to ramp up to around 380,000 oz over the next two to three years. Salares Norte is expected to deliver first gold by the end of Q2 2023 and then build to full production in 2024. The company also said its balance sheet remains healthy, providing it with significant flexibility to pursue its strategic objectives.