There
is a significant operational aspect to BHP Billiton’s buyout of WMC
that nobody has yet commented on. Nearly all of WMC’s assets are
underground hard rock mines, something BHPB has no expertise in.
Underground hard rock operations require a good deal of planning
finesse to be successful – you can’t just hit them with a bigger hammer
to force them to ramp up production. It would be interesting to see how
BHPB management adjusts to such a change in mindset, and how it affects
WMC’s current operational managers.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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