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Lonmin plc
Type Public
Founded 1909
Headquarters London, England, UK
Key people Roger Phillimore (Chairman)
Ian Farmer (CEO)
Mahomed Seedat (COO)
Industry Mining
Products Platinum Group Metals
Revenue $1,062 million (2009)[1]
Operating income $(93) million (2009)[1]
Net income $(323) million (2009)[1]
Employees 22,000 (2009)[2]

Lonmin plc (LSE: LMI, JSE: LOLMI), formerly Lonrho plc, is a producer of platinum group metals operating in the Bushveld Complex of South Africa. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.



The Company was incorporated in the United Kingdom on 13 May 1909 as the London and Rhodesian Mining Company Limited.

Businessman Tiny Rowland was recruited as chief executive in 1962.[3] For many years during the second half of the twentieth century it was frequently in the news, not only due to the politically-sensitive part of the world in which it had mining businesses, but also – as it strove to become a conglomerate not wholly dependent on these businesses – in a number of takeover battles, most notably for the Harrods of Knightsbridge department store.[3]

In 1968, Lonrho acquired Ashanti Goldfields Corporation, a gold mining business in Ghana.[4] The former Conservative minister Duncan Sandys, a director of Ashanti, became Lonrho's chairman in 1972.[5]

During the 80s, Lonrho entered the British newspaper market, buying the Sunday newspaper The Observer in 1981[6] and the newly launched daily Today in 1986.[7] Today was sold to News International the following year,[8] while the Guardian Media Group bought the Observer in 1993.[6]

Sir Angus Ogilvy, married to a member of the British royal family (Princess Alexandra of Kent), was a Lonrho director and this increased media interest in the company's affairs. Ogilvy's career ended when Lonrho was involved in a sanctions-busting scandal concerning trade with Rhodesia. Prime Minister, Edward Heath, criticised the company, describing it in the House of Commons in 1973 as "an unpleasant and unacceptable face of capitalism."[9]

Tiny Rowland was finally ejected from Lonrho in October 1993 after a boardroom tussle with director Dieter Bock. [10]

Two months before Rowland's death (on 26 July 1998) the assets of Lonrho were demerged. Two publicly listed companies, Lonrho plc and Lonrho Africa plc were created – the former retaining all the non-African businesses and mining assets.[11] In 1999 Lonrho plc was renamed as Lonmin plc and a new era as a focused mining company began. Since then it has divested itself of all non-core assets.

In late 2008 CEO Brad Mills announced his intention to resign from his position, and Lonmin indicated that former chief strategic officer responsible for the company’s business development, Ian Farmer, would replace him.[12] This could be viewed as a positive development, as Farmer has more experience in the platinum industry. Mills leaves behind a "significant contribution in developing the company over the past four years" according to chairperson, Sir John Craven, as his introduction of mechanized mining has increased safety for the miners, as well as increasing productivity.[13]


The Company is a producer of platinum group metals operating mainly in the Bushveld Complex in South Africa. It has two multi-shaft mining operations, located respectively in:[14]

  • Marikana Region
  • Limpopo Region

Senior management

The Chief Executive from 1962 to 1994 was Tiny Rowland. Rowland was succeeded by Nicholas J Morrell who was at the helm until November 2000 when G Edward Haslem took over. Bradford Mills was appointed in March 2004. The current CEO (appointed c. Sept. 2008) is Ian Farmer.

role salary bonus total
Ian P. Farmer[15] Chief Executive Officer £351,538 £213,990 £565,528
Alan Ferguson[16] Chief Financial Officer £422,500 £366,344 £788,844


External links



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