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Anglo Hires Fund Manager Rutherford Amid Strategic Review

Anglo American Plc, the global mining company seeking to reverse a slump in earnings, appointed fund manager Jim Rutherford to its board as it reviews operations to save cash.

Rutherford, 54, has worked 16 years at Capital Group investing in the mining and metals industry, London-based Anglo said today in a statement. He starts his new role immediately.

Chief Executive Officer Mark Cutifani, who replaced Cynthia Carroll in April, is reviewing projects from Australia to Brazil in pursuit of savings and cash-flow gains. Underlying earnings fell 54 percent in 2012 as commodity prices slid and costs rose, and are likely to fall again this year, according to analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

The company, which has identified 15 assets for possible divestment, withdrew from the Pebble copper project in Alaska in September, leading to a $300 million charge. Anglo also said today it completed the sale of its Amapa iron-ore mine in Brazil, with buyer Zamin Ferrous Ltd. paying $134 million in cash and as much as $130 million over five years.

Anglo’s largest Brazilian iron-ore venture is the $8.8 billion Minas-Rio development, which was subject to a $4 billion writedown following cost overruns that preceded Carroll’s departure. While the company announced earlier this year it was seeking a partner for the mine, Cutifani said last month it may be content to keep full ownership as iron-ore prices recover.

Anglo shares rose 2.4 percent to 1,494.5 pence by the close in London. They have declined 21 percent this year.

The CEO is targeting a total annual cash-flow gain of $1.3 billion, he said in July.

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