Chip Goodyear turns down oligarch Usmanov's job offer

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The Independent Online

Charles "Chip" Goodyear, the former chief executive of Ftse 100 mining giant BHP Billiton, has turned down a return to the sector with Russian steel group Metalloinvest.

The company approached Mr Goodyear in the run-up to Christmas as it wants a big name recognised by western investors as chief executive ahead of an expected London Stock Exchange listing later this year.

However, Mr Goodyear has resisted the overtures of Metalloinvest founder Alisher Usmanov, the 46-year-old Russian billionaire who holds a 26 per cent stake in Arsenal Football Club. An industry source said that Mr Goodyear rejected the offer quickly. He is said to prefer to be involved in a company with "a global footprint that needs advice" and hopes to land a big job in the first half of this year, added the source.

Mr Goodyear, an American, is based in London and unemployed, having left Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings last year over disagreements on strategy. He was chief executive-designate at Temasek, having made his name leading BHP for five years, but left the fund before he took the reins.

The source said: "Metalloinvest pitched in terms of looking for the right individual to bring it into a global framework. They want someone who can give them that credibility."

Metalloinvest, which is the world's fourth biggest iron ore producer, is expected to continue to sound out potential chief executives. The board is currently chaired by British tycoon Farhad Moshiri. The general director is Mark Buzuk, the former chairman of the Bogoslovsky aluminium plant in Russia.

Metalloinvest had planned to float in London and Moscow in 2008, listing about 10 per cent of its shares in a move that would have valued the company at $25bn. The listing was abandoned because of the financial crisis.

Another company set to join the Ftse is DP World, the Dubai owner of shipping operator P&O.

Deutsche and Citi, the investment banks, are to be formally appointed as sponsors for the listing, rewards for recommending the listing for the second quarter of this year. The secondary listing will buttress the company as its shares have performed poorly since joining the Dubai exchange in late 2007.

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