BHP names Mike Henry as new chief executive

BHP has opted for in-company experience with the appointment of Mike Henry as its new chief executive to replace the retiring Andrew Mackenzie, who has led the company since 2013.

Henry is a veteran BHP executive and will move from his current post as head of the Australian minerals division to the top job at the world’s largest listed mining company.

The 53-year old Canadian takes the helm at a time when BHP finds itself in a healthy financial position, having posted a net profit of US$8.31 billion for the 12 months through June – it’s best result in five years.

However, Henry will be faced with challenges in the shape of slowing growth in China – the company’s biggest customer – plus social and environmental issues.

BHP’s new chief remained tight lipped when asked if the firm would quit its membership with the Minerals Council of Australia, a lobbyist for the coal industry, amid continuing shareholder pressure relating to the firm’s stance on climate change.

“Mike Henry’s deep operational and commercial experience, developed in a global career spanning the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia, is the perfect mix for our next CEO,” said chairman Ken MacKenzie.