Kloppers' accidental recipe for riches

As luck would have it, failure of some plum opportunities for BHP Billiton paved the way to Marius Kloppers' shale coup. Now the miner has the chance for an even bigger slice of the action.

These resources should to be extremely profitable for BHP Billiton and will drive the company’s value well into the future. As I have said previously, the acquisition has the potential to equate with the Mount Newman iron ore acquisition by Ian McLennan in the 1960s and James McNeill’s acquisition of Utah Coal and Escondida Copper in the 1980s. (Kloppers' slippery BHP gold mine, December 4).

Yet it could easily have been different. Marius Kloppers got the job as BHP chief executive over then BHP finance director Chris Lynch because the board believed he was the best person to drive a merger with Rio Tinto. 

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