Petra Diamonds chair steps down

Petra Diamonds has announced that chairman Peter Hill, CBE, has stepped down from his role following the conclusion of its annual general meeting.

Following his departure, the board has appointed Varda Shine, senior independent director, as chair of Petra.

Shine will lead a search for a permanent chair and also become chair of the Nomination and Investment Committees.

Bernard Pryor, non-executive director and chair of the Health and Safety Committee, will become the senior independent director.

Shine will remain as chair of the Remuneration Committee during this interim period.

She is also the senior independent director of Ecora Resources plc and a non-executive director of Sarine Technologies Limited (Singapore Listed).

A 30-year career with De Beers culminated in her appointment as CEO of De Beers Trading Company.

In addition to a number of appointments as a non-executive director, she has worked extensively as an executive mentor focusing on leaders and business growth and transformation and has previously been a non-executive director at Lonmin plc.

Hill said: “It has been an honour and a privilege to be a director and chair of Petra over the last almost four years. Petra has an exceptional management team and world-class diamond assets.

“It has successfully weathered a number of exogenous pressures over the last few years and is very well placed for the future and I feel it is now appropriate for a new chair to take the company on to its next phase of development and growth. I wish the company, the board and management all the very best for the future.”

Shine added: “I would like to thank Peter for his service to Petra Diamonds as its chair and look forward to working with my fellow directors to ensure a smooth transition and continuation of Petra’s robust governance framework until a permanent replacement is sought.Peter joined the Petra board in January 2020 and became chairman at the end of March that year, just as the COVID-19 pandemic was breaking.

“He helped steer Petra through the pandemic and the company’s successful financial restructuring. He has refreshed the board and has worked with CEO Richard Duffy and his management team to stabilise the company. On behalf of the board and Petra, we are grateful to Peter for the significant contribution he made during his tenure and wish him every success in his future endeavours.”

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