Directors

Eric Finlayson

Director

Eric Finlayson

Director

Mr. Finlayson was appointed President of HPX in 2015 after serving as Senior Advisor-Business Development since 2013.

Prior to joining HPX, he spent 24 years with Rio Tinto including 5 years as Global Head of Exploration and 2 years as the CEO of Rio Tinto Coal in Mozambique. Mr. Finlayson is an exploration geologist with more than 35 years of global, multi-commodity experience.

Kgalema Motlanthe

Director

Kgalema Motlanthe

Director

His Excellency Kgalema Motlanthe was President of South Africa between 2008 and 2009, and subsequently served as the Deputy President from 2009 to 2014.

He heads the Motlanthe Foundation that is dedicated to a range of public-benefit activities, including conflict resolution, promotion of human rights and democracy and the provision of care for pre-school-age children, along with buildings, equipment and educational support for public primary schools. Mr. Motlanthe also is a trustee of Liliesleaf Trust and the Brazzaville Foundation.

Kadiatou Konaté

Director

Kadiatou Konaté

Director

Kadiatou Konaté is the Managing Director of Sustainable Mining & Infrastructure Group (SMIG), a purpose-driven organisation designing and implementing innovative approaches for the development and funding of sustainable mining and infrastructure projects in Guinea and West Africa.

Prior to her current role, Ms Konaté held positions as Director of Planning & Business Strategy for the Rio Tinto Minerals Group, leading the business planning and evaluating capital expansion projects.  She was previously Controller and CFO for Rio Tinto Simandou’s Iron Ore Project. Her prior roles include leading risk and compliance teams.

Ms Konaté is a certified public accountant and she holds a master’s degree of accountancy from the University of Oklahoma.

Mamady Youla

Director and Chief Executive Officer

Mamady Youla

Director and Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Mamady Youla is the Chief Executive Officer of SMFG. Mr. Youla previously served as the Prime Minister of the Republic of Guinea from December 2015 to May 2018 during the second term of President Alpha Condé. During Mr. Youla’s mandate, Guinea achieved extraordinary economic growth of greater than 10% in both 2016 and 2017, registered a record level of foreign investment, and completed a reform program with the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

Mr. Youla is also a highly experienced mining executive and was previously the CEO of Guinea Alumina Corporation (“GAC”) from June 2004 to December 2015. GAC is a subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium and operates the Sangarédi bauxite mine, located in northwest Guinea, and related rail and port infrastructure. Mr. Youla was instrumental in overseeing the construction and operation of the US$1.4 billion project, which was one of the largest greenfield investments in Guinea.

Moussa Magassouba

Director

Moussa Magassouba

Director

Mr Magassouba has twenty years of experience in the mining sector in Guinea and internationally.

He graduated in 2001 from the Boké Higher Institute of Mining and Geology, where he studied mining engineering.

Mr Magassouba began his career as a mining engineer in 2001 at AngloGold Ashanti, Guinea (SAG) before being recruited by Kouroussa Gold (SEMAFO-GUINEE) in 2002.

He subsequently obtained a Master’s degree in mining engineering and mineral economics from the Mackay School of Mines and from the Colorado School of Mines, and a Master’s degree in international business from Columbia University, New York, USA.

Previous posts include Director of Mining for North America at the consulting firm ACCENTURE then from late 2014 until 15 June 2020 he served as Deputy CEO for mining for the Saudi Government.

From June 2020, until his appointment as Minister for Mines and Geology on 4 November 2021, he served as CEO at AngloGold Ashanti Guinea (SAG).

Nava Touré

Director

Nava Touré

Director

Mr Touré began his career as assistant professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering of the University of Conakry (Guinea). Here he collaborated with the national administration on the development of a strategy for downstream integration of the bauxite industry in Guinea and a pricing policy for optimisation of the national benefits deriving from the extractive industry in general. He has subsequently worked within the mining and energy sectors of Guinea.

For over 30 years, he served as the manager of various mining companies and projects in the energy sector, including several projects for infrastructure and institutional development, within Government, the private sector and in collaboration with international technical partners. As Chairman of the governmental “Comité Technique de Revue des Titres et Conventions Miniers”, he led the global mining contracts review process launched by the Guinean Government in 2012.
Mr Touré is currently a member of the board of directors of the Société de Gestion et d’Exploitation de Kaleta (SOGEKA) and is a member of the board of directors of the Agence Nationale d’Aménagement des Infrastructures Minières (ANAIM).

Patricia Moller

Director

Patricia Moller

Director

Ms. Moller is a former U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Guinea, and in recognition of her service she received an appointment to the National Patriotic Order of Guinea with rank of Commander.

Her highly-distinguished diplomatic career spanned more than 25 years. She has left active service with the U.S. Department of State to return to the private sector where she currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of West Africa for the LNG Group, and is a Board member of the BAARA Hospital in Guinea, VISTA Insurance Company, Orbis International-The Flying Eye Hospital, Orbis UK and FAYUS. Ms. Moller now consults with companies looking to do business in developing countries, many of them in Africa, and was one of the founding members of the Ebola Private Sector Mobilization Group formed in response to the 2014 West African Ebola crisis.

Philip Mitchell

Director

Philip Mitchell

Director

Mr. Mitchell held a number of senior leadership positions at Rio Tinto during his 32-year career, most recently as Head of Business Development. His roles have spanned finance, M&A and strategic business change, including playing leading roles in the transformation of Hamersley into Rio Tinto’s key iron ore business.

Robin Sandenburgh

Director

Robin Sandenburgh

Director

Robin Sandenburgh is an Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) Sustainability Executive with over 40 years of diverse experience primarily in E&S policies, regulations, and performance of private sector enterprises, with significant experience in emerging markets and across a diverse range of industrial sectors. Ms Sandenburgh has extensive expertise in environmental management and monitoring, pollution mitigation, stakeholder engagement, community compensation and resettlement, assessment of climate impacts, and ESG training and development.

Ms Sandenburgh’s career included 25 years with the ESG Department of IFC, the World Bank Group’s private sector investment arm, most recently as a Senior Manager for Latin America/Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa. While at IFC she led regional teams of E&S professionals based in Harare, Zimbabwe, New Delhi, India, Cairo, Egypt, and Istanbul, Turkey, responsible for E&S due diligence and monitoring of IFC’s regional investment portfolio. Ms Sandenburgh was part of the core team that developed IFC’s 2012 Environmental and Social Performance Standards, widely considered the global benchmark for private investment in emerging markets.

Ms Sandenburgh has advised organisations and industries in developing countries and has built up an extensive network in the sustainability area through her extensive experience as a speaker, panellist, and moderator at over 50 international conferences on sustainability, climate change, and ESG global best practices for both private and public sector audiences.

Ms Sandenburgh holds a Bachelor of Arts in History and Sociology from Brown University in Rhode Island, and a Master’s degree in Public Policy from The University of Michigan, both in the US.

Senior Staff

Mamady Youla

Director and Chief Executive Officer

Mamady Youla

Director and Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Mamady Youla is the Chief Executive Officer of SMFG. Mr. Youla previously served as the Prime Minister of the Republic of Guinea from December 2015 to May 2018 during the second term of President Alpha Condé. During Mr. Youla’s mandate, Guinea achieved extraordinary economic growth of greater than 10% in both 2016 and 2017, registered a record level of foreign investment, and completed a reform program with the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

Mr. Youla is also a highly experienced mining executive and was previously the CEO of Guinea Alumina Corporation (“GAC”) from June 2004 to December 2015. GAC is a subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium and operates the Sangarédi bauxite mine, located in northwest Guinea, and related rail and port infrastructure. Mr. Youla was instrumental in overseeing the construction and operation of the US$1.4 billion project, which was one of the largest greenfield investments in Guinea.

Shane Kay

Chief Financial Officer

Shane Kay

Chief Financial Officer

Shane Kay is a certified practicing accountant and chartered company secretary with 20 years’ experience in corporate accounting, financial management, budgeting, contracts, management, company secretarial responsibilities, reporting and legal compliance including with anti-corruption laws.

After starting his career in Brisbane in accountancy and financial analyst roles, Mr Kay served as Finance Manager for Rio Tinto Plc. on its Simandou Project in Guinea. He joined SMFG in 2012 as Finance Manager, responsible for the functional transition of the Nimba Iron Ore Project from a unit dependent on an owner to a standalone commercial entity across its human resource, IT, financial and governance functions. He was promoted to CFO in 2015, and is responsible for operational and capital budgets, forecasts and reporting, financial and tax reporting, contract management, company secretarial duties, anti-bribery and corruption and information technology.

Mike Glaser

Study Manager

Mike Glaser

Study Manager

Mike Glaser is a geologist by training but has assumed various technical, operations and management roles around the globe for the last 25 years.

He worked for much of his career for BHP (Billiton), managing various geological and mine production teams and activities in South Africa and South America. He has worked in greenfield exploration, as a mine manager and on a complex joint venture where he supported HSEC performance, operations management and cost control. Mr Glaser joined the Nimba Project team in 2011 as the Area Manager Technical. He currently serves as the Study Manager, responsible for the completion of technical and engineering studies for the project.

Hadja I. Diallo

Human Resources Manager

Hadja I. Diallo

Human Resources Manager

Hadja I. Diallo is SMFG’s Human Resources Manager with over 15 years’ experience in the Guinean mining sector and a practical understanding of Guinean labour laws. She has as well a strong background in management of human resources (HR), recruitment and talent, performance, staff retention, classification and compensation, industrial relations, employee relations, policy interpretation and training.

Before joining SMFG in February 2021, Hadja served as Human Resources Manager for Alliance Mining Commodities Guinee (AMC SA) for the previous three years, from December 2017 to January 2021. Prior to AMC SA, Hadja held several leadership positions in human resources at Guinea Alumina Corporation SA, a subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA), where she worked from May 2006 to November 2017, including the position of Senior Human Resources Business Partner at EGA in Dubai, on a secondment contract from 2016 to 2017. Following her graduation in 2003, Hadja operated as a finance controller for Compagnie Shell de Guinée, a petroleum company, from 2004 to 2005.

Hadja first graduated in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in economics from University of Rouen (France). She also holds a master’s degree in international banking and finance from University Le Havre (France) in 2003, and a second master’s degree in HR management from the University of Poitiers (France) in 2013.

Hadja is the President of Guinean Council of Human Resources Professional (COGUIPRO-RH) – a prominent HR organisation on the national level, where she mentors upcoming HR professionals and shares her knowledge and passion for HR.

Ibrahim Baldé

Guinea Government Relations Manager

Ibrahim Baldé

Guinea Government Relations Manager

Ibrahim Baldé studied law at Hassan 1er University in Morocco.  He was selected by BHP Billiton in 2007 for its Green Shoots talent-recruitment programme, to develop future leaders for BHP Billiton’s operations in Guinea.  Mr Baldé studied and worked for a year in South Africa, where he learned English and BHP Billiton’s corporate culture at its head office in Johannesburg.  Returning to Guinea in 2008, he worked in SMFG’s Human Resources (HR) Department, after which he worked in Australia, with BHP Billiton’s HR Department at Port Hedland, West Australia.

Returning again to Guinea, Mr Baldé served as Human Resources Superintendent for SMFG from 2009 to 2012.  In 2012-13, he worked in the Nimba Project’s Study Team based in London, developing the likely terms, conditions, opportunities and constraints relating to the Project’s future operations.

From later in 2013 until present, Mr Baldé has served as SMFG’s Government Relations Manager from its office in Conakry.  He quickly developed extensive working relationships at multiple levels across government, in particular with the Ministry of Mines and Geology but also with many other governmental departments and agencies with which SMFG interacts. He represents SMFG at the Guinean Chamber of Mines.

Jamison Suter

ESIA External Relations Manager

Jamison Suter

ESIA External Relations Manager

With degrees in cultural anthropology and environmental science, Jamison Suter worked for the Environment Department of the World Bank Group in the mid-1990s, mainly for the newly created Global Environment Facility (GEF).

He then worked for eight years managing environmental conservation programs for the international NGO, Fauna & Flora International (FFI). He focused particularly on West African nations affected by conflict – Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Côte d’Ivoire – and on balancing the perceived need for immediate ‘development’ in contexts of extreme poverty and socio-economic disarray, with longer-term imperatives like sustainability, protection of biological diversity & ecosystem services, and fighting corruption. Since 2006, he has supported exploration-level environmental management, community & external relations, and the environmental and social impact assessment for SMFG. He has been SMFG’s primary point of contact with the public on issues like world heritage, biodiversity, good governance, human rights and sustainable development.