Fortescue Metals Group logo on phone screen and computer.

Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) has suffered yet another blow, with two more executives leaving the company – bringing the total to three over the course of one week.

The announcement that Fiona Hicks was stepping down from her role as Chief Executive Officer was made by the company on 28 August 2023.

Christine Morris stepped down from her role as Chief Financial Officer on Thursday 31 August, after a mere three months in the role. 

Fortescue Future Industries Director, Guy Debelle, is the third senior figure to exit the company, with critical minerals company, Tivan, revealing Dr Debelle’s exit in a media release on Friday 1 September.

Tivan divulged that Dr Debelle had stepped down as a Non-Executive Director from the Board of Fortescue Future Industries – the green energy arm of Dr Andrew Forrest’s Fortescue Metals Group – and would join the Board of Tivan in the role of Non-Executive Director, effective immediately.

Tivan Executive Chair, Grant Wilson, welcomed Dr Debelle on behalf of the company’s Board.

“Guy is highly regarded in policy circles and across global financial markets. His work ethic, intellect, networks and solution-driven ethos will further invigorate Tivan, and bolster our emergence as a strategic leader in the critical minerals sector,” Mr Wilson said.

Dr Debelle said, “I am excited to join Tivan, who are focused on realising the great opportunity Australia has in the green transition, particularly in the critical minerals space.

“I am looking forward to working with the team to further enhance Tivan’s inclusive and sustainable approach to developing its resources to benefit the community and deliver value for its shareholders.”

Dr Debelle’s departure follows the exit of Ms Morris, which was announced after market close on 31 August. Ms Morris was appointed to the role in early June, and started in July, and her sudden resignation has come as a surprise for many in the industry.

Ms Morris’s departure comes only days after the equally sudden resignation of Chief Executive of Fortescue’s mining arm, Fiona Hick. With Ms Morris stepping into the role under Ms Hick’s leadership, sources have speculated that the departures of the two women may be linked. 

Speaking to 9News on 30 August, Dr Forrest shed some light on the shock departure of Ms Hick, less than six months into the job and a mere 48 hours after the company’s 20-year anniversary celebration at a Pilbara mine site.

In an interview, Dr Forrest was asked whether Ms Hick left of her own accord or if she was pushed out.

“Fiona was given a choice to make and she chose, so I’d say she wasn’t pushed,” Dr Forrest told 9News.

As of yet, it is unclear what the repercussions of the tumultuous week will have on the industry, with FMG finding itself in the difficult position of urgently needing to fill positions.

Image: T. Schneider.

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