CEO of the Year, sponsored by Vocus: David Southam, Mincor Resources
The past three years since Southam took over at Mincor has been a pivotal time for the company, with the past year seeing it return to nickel production on time and under budget, despite the pressures of a global pandemic.
A strong, charismatic leader, Southam becomes the first person to win Emerging Leader of the Year (an award he won in 2019) and go on to win CEO of the Year.
The runner-up was Capricorn Metals CEO Kim Massey.
Emerging Leader of the Year, sponsored by SGS: Tony Ottaviano, Liontown Resources
Larger than life Ottaviano burst onto the scene last year, taking over as managing director of developer Liontown after a long career with the majors.
Ottaviano is relishing his first CEO role, and it shows, with Liontown capping off a busy year by last month pushing the button on its large Kathleen Valley lithium development.
There was only one vote separating Ottaviano and runner-up, AIC Mines managing director Aaron Colleran.
Deal of the Year: Sandfire Resources for the US$1.8 billion acqusition of the MATSA copper complex in Spain
In September 2021, Sandfire made the most important announcement since the discovery of the DeGrussa mine when it announced the acquisition of MATSA.
The bold deal, the largest all-cash offer by an Australian mining company, saw Sandfire raise more than twice its market capitalisation.
In a tight category, there were only three votes separating first and third. The runner-up was Evolution Mining for its acquisition of the remaining 30% of the Ernest Henry copper-gold mine in Queensland.
Explorer of the Year: Predictive Discovery for the 3.65Moz NE Bankan gold project in Guinea
Predictive Discovery went from zero to a 3.65Moz gold resource at NE Bankan within just 20 months.
The deposit is on the verge of getting bigger, with a resource update due in the next couple of days.
The runner-up in this category was Rumble Resources, for its Earaheedy zinc-lead discovery in Western Australia.
Now in their sixth year, the awards honour the best of the Australian mining sector in the 2022 financial year across four categories.
After a month-long submission process in June, the shortlist of finalists were announced on July 4 and we have spent the past three weeks profiling the nominees to highlight the reasons behind their selection.
Our judging panel then voted in each category.
Our panel of judges comprised Argonaut deputy chairman Liam Twigger, Lion Selection Group investment manager Hedley Widdup, Cube Consulting managing director Rebecca Prain, Melbourne Mining Club chairman and Ord Minnett financial advisor Richard Morrow, RFC Ambrian associate director Cian Caffrey and MNN columnists Dr Allan Trench, John Sykes and Barry FitzGerald, as well as the MNN editorial team.
Thank you to everyone who took the time to nominate.
Trophies will be presented to the winners at Diggers & Dealers next week.