Secretive chief takes centre stage

PUBLICITY-SHY chief executive Ivan Glasenberg will end years of secrecy by putting the private firm centre stage in an initial public offering (IPO).

The former South African and Israel champion race walker is known to be wary of the limelight, preferring relative anonymity.

Yet the 54-year-old has recognised the constraints of a private partnership on Glencore, despite the scrutiny it will now come under from new shareholders and the public gaze.

Glasenberg took the long road to the top, first starting as a coal trader for Glencore in 1983. He took a quarter of a century to become chief executive of the Swiss-based firm, taking the top job in 2002, via several senior positions in Australia, Hong Kong and Beijing.

He has since built the firm into a commodities powerhouse, as one of the world’s biggest privately held firms.