Kropz leadership turnover continues as CEO Mark Summers to step down end-2022

Phosphate fertilizer

KROPZ CEO Mark Summers will step down from his post at the end of the year, the phosphate development company said today.

“Mark will continue to work with the Kropz team and his replacement, once appointed, to ensure an orderly hand over and that the day-to-day activities of the business continues,” the company said in an annoucement to the JSE.

Summers said he wanted to pursue “new opportunities”. He was appointed in August 2020 following the resignation of Ian Harebottle who held the position for two years.

Founding CEO, Mike Nunn, ran the company from 2016 to 2017 with the Elandsfontein project then falling under Michelle Lawrence, the firm’s technical director. Former African Rainbow Minerals executive Jan Steenkamp was also MD of Kropz’s Elandsfontein project for a while prior to quitting the post, although he kept a board seat.

“With Elandsfontein now moving into the operational phase, and the way forward at Hinda well-defined, I have decided that the time is right to hand over the reins at Kropz and seek new opportunities,” said Summers in a statement. Hinda is a project situated in the Republic of Congo.

The Elandsfontein project has had a stop-start existence as it dealt with a protracted legal challenge from environmentalists as well as running into technical problems.

Phosphate has become increasingly strategic following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia which has resulted in a shortage of wheat supplies. Fertiliser prices have vaulted as a result.

Shares in the company took off overnight increasing from about eight British pence in July last year to around £7.80 a share today.