Neal Froneman, the prominent South African business executive and leading figure behind multinational precious metal mining group Sibanye Stillwater, has declared that the company remains resolute in its pursuit of copper assets across the African Copperbelt, despite facing a setback in the final bidding round for Zambia’s Mopani Copper Mines.
In a recent statement, Froneman emphasized the challenges of the current copper market, acknowledging its prior overheating but highlighting a gradual recovery.
“We continue to look for copper opportunities, but it’s not easy, and the copper market has been overheated. But again, it’s coming back slightly,” Neal Froneman said, underscoring copper’s significance in Sibanye-Stillwater’s diverse portfolio.
Froneman’s influence: A 0.3-percent stake in Sibanye-Stillwater’s success story
Sibanye-Stillwater, a top-performing multinational precious metal mining company with operations in South Africa and involvement in gold and base metal mining projects in South Africa and the Americas, has played a pivotal role in the global precious metals industry.
Froneman, instrumental in transforming the company into one of the world’s leading primary producers of platinum, palladium, and gold, presently holds a 0.3-percent stake, equivalent to 8,382,849 ordinary shares, in the precious metal mining group.
Sibanye-Stillwater’s ongoing pursuit of African ventures despite Mopani Copper Mines setback
The company’s strategic expansion into copper and green metals became evident in 2023 when, under Froneman’s leadership, Sibanye-Stillwater emerged as one of the four entities shortlisted to acquire Zambia’s Mopani Copper Mines.
However, a unit of the United Arab Emirates’ International Holdings Company secured a 51 percent stake in Mopani, defeating Sibanye and China’s Zijin Mining Group. Undeterred by this setback, Sibanye-Stillwater is actively pursuing deals in various African nations, including Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Froneman’s vision and Sibanye-Stillwater’s strategic moves underscore the company’s commitment to diversification and resilience in the dynamic global metals market.The company is engaged in a lithium project in Finland and plans to contribute to the development of a new lithium mine in the United States.