Core Lithium (ASX:CXO) Rises 7% on CEO Appointment

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Aussie lithium developer Core Lithium [ASX:CXO] shares lifted on Friday after revealing a new CEO as it pushes toward production.

Core Lithium [ASX:CXO] trades at a market cap of $2.1 billion, with shares up 100% year-to-date:

ASX:CXO core lithium chart

Core Lithium appoints new CEO

The company announced that Gareth Manderson will replace Stephen Biggins as Core Lithium’s new CEO.

Mr Biggins announced his resignation in March, citing personal reasons, saying.

Core is in perfect position to reach its next stage of growth as a lithium producer, and I feel it is the right time to step down as Managing Director and pass the torch on to the right person to lead Core in this next stage.

Gareth Manderson joins CXO following a stint at Rio Tinto, where he was General Manager Sustaining Capital.

CXO noted Mr Manderson delivered a project portfolio of more than 600 projects at Rio, spending $1.6 billion each year across 17 mines.

The new CEO will have total fixed remuneration of $718,250, with a base salary of $692,958.

CXO trades at a market cap of $2.1 billion, with CXO shares up 100% year-to-date.

Mr Manderson will take the reins on 8 August, with Mr Biggins remaining in the senior role in the interim.

Core Lithium’s Chairman, Greg English, commented:

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Gareth as Chief Executive of Core. His experience in developing teams, delivering projects and safely operating mining and processing operations make Gareth the perfect fit for Core’s first CEO, as our Finniss Lithium Project moves from consQtruction to operation later this year.

There are many synergies between Gareth’s previous senior roles in managing complex mine, mineral processing, port, township and logistics operations during his tenure at Rio Tinto and the Finniss Project which is 25km from the Darwin CBD and port. “Gareth’s previous Northern Territory experience and managing the effects of the annual wet season will also be essential as we plan to be operating in this environment for years to come.”’

Mr Manderson offered his thoughts on joining Core Lithium:

I have been impressed by what the Core team have achieved to date and I am delighted to be given the opportunity to lead Core at this vital time in the Company’s growth.

With construction of Stage 1 of the Finniss Lithium Project nearing completion and the pending export of lithium, I look forward to leading Core and working with my colleagues across the business to ensure that we maintain strong safety, operational and financial performance.’

Overlooked ASX lithium stocks

In 2021, junior lithium stocks like Sayona and Lake Resources were some of the top performers on the All Ords.

The juniors benefited greatly from a bull run in the lithium sector, but are now well down from their 52-week highs, despite lithium prices remaining elevated.

Yet, lithium developers like SYA and LKE are years away from production — and years away from profitability.

Will the market conditions remain the same in five years? Or will prices stabilise just as the likes of LKE and SYA start shipping lithium?

Will 2022 be the year lithium producers outperform lithium developers, who may be priced to perfection already?

And are there lithium stocks the market is overlooking right now?

According to Money Morning’s recent research report on the sector, yes.

In fact, this research report profiles three of them.

To find out more, access the report here.


Kiryll Prakapenka,
For Money Morning

About Kiryll Prakapenka

Kiryll Prakapenka is a research analyst focusing on investigating the biggest trends in investments. Kiryll brings sound analytical skills to his work, courtesy of his Philosophy degree from the University of Melbourne. A student of legendary investors and their strategies, Kiryll likes to synthesise macroeconomic narratives with a keen understanding…

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