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RAPAPORT. Gemfields’ new owner, Pallinghurst Resources, has appointed Sean Gilbertson as CEO of the colored-gemstone producer following the resignation of the miner’s senior executives. 

Gilbertson, an executive director of Pallinghurst, is a longstanding member of Gemfields’ board and was closely involved in the acquisition and redevelopment of the gemstone company’s Kagem emerald mine in Zambia, Pallinghurst said Friday. 

Former Gemfields CEO Ian Harebottle and chief financial officer Janet Boyce resigned following the takeover, as did the company’s non-executive directors, Pallinghurst said. The acquisition by the private-equity group resulted in Gemfields getting delisted on July 28 and becoming a subsidiary of Pallinghurst, which expects to own the miner outright by the end of this month. 

Pallinghurst chairman Brian Gilbertson has taken on the Gemfields chairmanship, and David Lovett, a longstanding member of Gemfields’ finance team, has been appointed CFO. Adrian Banks, Gemfields’ product director in charge of grading, sorting and auctioning emeralds and rubies, has joined the company’s board. CV Suresh, who ran the Kagem mine from 2007 to 2015, has also become a board member, taking on responsibility for Gemfields’ Zambian assets. 

Meanwhile, geologist Kartikeya Parikshya has joined the miner’s board and will be responsible for its Ethiopian and Mozambican operations, including the Montepuez ruby mine in the latter country. 

Pallinghurst will carry out a thorough review of Gemfields’ operations. It said the miner’s debt was at “record levels,” largely due to a drop in emerald production from Kagem and a resulting decline in auction revenues from the mine. The new owner intends to report the findings to the board by mid-September, and will talk to shareholders shortly afterward. 

“The new board, dominated by Gemfields veterans covering all the key disciplines, reflects our desire to focus on enhancing the operations, processes and core activities of the Gemfields group,” said Sean Gilbertson.

Original article published in Diamonds.net

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