Executive Directors

Desmond Sacco
BSc (Hons) (Geology)

Des qualified as a geologist and joined the Assore group in 1968. He was appointed to the Assore board in 1974 and, on the retirement of his father, Guido, in 1992, was appointed Chairman and Managing Director. In that year he was also appointed Deputy Chairman of Assmang Limited and in 1999 he became Chairman of Assmang. He is a fellow of the Institute of Directors (IoD) and of the Geological Society of South Africa (GSSA).

Charles E Walters
Chief Executive Officer
BSc (Mech) Eng, BCom, PMD

Charles qualified with a B.Sc. (Mech) Eng in 1989 from the University of Cape Town. He obtained a B.Com in 1992 from the University of South Africa and completed the Programme for Management Development at Harvard Business School in 2001. Charles began his career with Anglo American in 1991 as a Graduate Engineer and following engineering and management training at Anglo American, he joined Mondi as Marketing Manager for Exports in 1996. In 2002, he was appointed as Managing Director of Mondi Sales International, based in Dublin, Ireland. Upon returning to South Africa in 2006, he was appointed as the Managing Director of Bearing Man, a division of the Invicta Group. He was appointed deputy CEO of Invicta Holdings in 2013 and as its CEO in 2015. He joined the Assore Group on 1 April 2017 as CEO-designate and was appointed as CEO on 1 July 2017, upon the retirement of Chris Cory.

Patrick E Sacco
Deputy Chief Executive Officer
BA (Indus Psych), MA (Marketing)

Pat joined the Assore group in 2003 after completing a master’s degree at the University of Colorado (USA). He was appointed a director of Ore & Metal, the selling and marketing agent for all the group’s products, in 2007, and as from 1 March 2016, has been appointed as its Managing Director. Pat was appointed as a director of Assmang in 2008, and is on the board of Oresteel Investments Proprietary Limited, the ultimate holding company of Assore. On 1 July 2015, he was appointed as a director of the International Manganese Institute (IMnI).

With effect from 1 January 2019, he was appointed as Deputy Chief Executive Officer.

Bastiaan H van Aswegen
Group Technical and Operations Director
BEng (Metallurgy), BCom, MEng

Tiaan obtained a BEng (Metallurgy) from the University of Pretoria (UP) in 1982 and later obtained BCom (Unisa) and MEng (UP) degrees. After working for Iscor and Samancor in production and on projects, he was appointed by Samancor as General Manager of the Palmiet Ferrochrome Operation (Mogale) in 1999. He joined Assore in 2003 as Consulting Metallurgist and is a member of the Assmang Operations Committee. In September 2012, he was appointed Group Technical and Operations Director of Assore and a director of Assmang. In June 2014, he was appointed as Chairman of Assmang subsidiary, Sakura Ferroalloys Sdn.Bhd, Malaysia.

Ross A Davies
Chief Financial Officer
B Compt (Hons), CA(SA)

Ross qualified as a chartered accountant in 1994, following the completion of his articles at KPMG Aiken and Peat in 1992. He then worked at Sappi Limited, holding various financial positions over 14 years, including managing the accounting functions in Europe (Brussels) for two years and in South Africa for 8 years. In 2008, he joined the group as Group Accountant in 2008 and was appointed as Chief Financial Officer in February 2017 and to the board on 20 February 2018.

Non-executive Directors

Edward M Southey
Deputy Chairman and lead independent non-executive director

Ed was admitted as an attorney, notary and conveyancer in 1967 and practiced as a partner of Webber Wentzel until his retirement as senior partner of that firm in 2006. He remains an executive consultant to the firm. He is a former president of the Law Society of the Northern province and of the Law Society of South Africa. He is a director of a number of companies. He joined the Assore board as a non-executive director in January 2009, and was appointed as Deputy Chairman and lead independent director in November 2010. He is the chairman of the group’s Audit and Risk, and Remuneration committees.
Delight Aitken
Independent non-executive director
Dip Bus Admin

Delight holds a Business Administration Diploma from the University of Wales and an Associate Certificate in Management from the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business. She possesses more than 20 years’ experience in the energy sector, most recently with Chevron Corporation where she was the Policy Government and Public Affairs Manager, Africa and Middle East. Prior to that she held technical roles in loss prevention and petroleum supply with Chevron in South Africa and the United States of America. She has also held operational positions with Transnet Pipelines where she started her career. Delight was appointed to the Board on 1 March 2017.
Sydney Mhlarhi
Independent non-executive director
BCom, BAcc, CA(SA)

Sydney qualified as a chartered accountant in 1998 following the completion of his articles at Ernst & Young in 1997. He co-founded Tamela Holdings Proprietary Limited (Tamela) in 2008, which holds investments in various industries. Sydney has held various senior positions in the investment banking sector, including those of divisional director at Standard Bank and Chief Investment Officer of Makalani Holdings Limited, a mezzanine financier which listed on the JSE in 2005. Sydney was appointed to the board on 15 October 2012 and serves on the group’s Audit and Risk Committee.
Thandeka N Mgoduso
Independent non-executive director
BA, MA(Clinical Psychology)

Thandeka is a clinical psychologist and obtained her qualifications at the universities of Fort Hare and the Witwatersrand. While in commerce, she held various leadership positions in operations as well as in human resources and currently consults in strategy and human resources. She chairs her company, Jojose Investments and holds non-executive directorships on the boards of the South African Reserve Bank, Tongaat Hulett and Air Traffic Navigation. She was appointed to the board with effect from 2 February 2015.
William F Urmson
Independent non-executive director

Bill was appointed as an independent non-executive director in October 2010 and chairs the group’s Social and Ethics Committee. He also serves on the group’s Audit and Risk and Remuneration committees. He is a former Deputy Chairman of Ernst & Young and has served the accounting profession as Chairman of the Accounting Practices and Ethics committees of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants. He is a former Director: Surveillance of the JSE and consulted to the exchange on a part-time basis until December 2013.