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Empire Metals appoints BHP veteran as process development manager

(Sharecast News) - Empire Metals announced the appointment of Narelle Marriott as its process development manager on Tuesday, effective from 11 March. The AIM-traded firm said Marriott would bring a wealth of experience to her new role, having previously served as a metallurgist at BHP, where she managed various aspects of process flowsheet development for over 20 years, covering commodities such as nickel, uranium, iron ore, and rare earths.

In her capacity as process development manager, Marriott would lead a small team of metallurgists and process design engineers.

Empire said her primary responsibility would be overseeing the design and execution of mineralogical studies and metallurgical test work.

She would also be instrumental in developing an economically viable metallurgical processing flowsheet for mineral beneficiation, titanium extraction, and product development within the Pitfield Titanium Project.

Additionally, the board said Marriott's leadership would be crucial in advancing the current process development studies towards the construction and successful operation of a demonstration process-product plant for Pitfield.

Her role would add depth to Empire Metals' technical leadership team, led by managing director Shaun Bunn, and complemented by exploration manager Andrew Faragher, formerly one of Rio Tinto's chief geologists.

Empire Metals said it had also reinforced its technical expertise with the addition of two senior titanium industry consultants, Dr Trevor Nicholson and Eugene Dardengo.

Together, they would bring more than 72 years of collective experience in the titanium processing and extraction industry.

"I am delighted to announce the appointment of Ms Marriott, who brings with her a wealth of experience and who will be a great addition to our growing project development team," said managing director Shaun Bunn.

"Building our in-house technical expertise and investing in the right talent is key as we look to accelerate the economic assessment and development of the Pitfield Titanium Project.

"I am also extremely pleased that Dr Trevor Nicholson and Mr Eugene Dardengo, two highly regarded titanium industry technical specialists will be joining the team as consultants."

Bunn added that Marriott's appointment as process development manager was a "key milestone" for the company, and would bolster the project team's processing and project development capabilities.

"This appointment, along with the appointment of the two senior titanium industry technical consultants, ensures we have the expertise required to successfully develop and execute our project development plans.

"The timing could not be better, having recently announced that we are commencing resource drilling at Pitfield to delineate high-grade, shallow zones of titanium mineralisation, and to provide key samples for mineralogical and metallurgical characterization."

At 1219 GMT, shares in Empire Metals were up 2.16% at 9.91p.

Reporting by Josh White for Sharecast.com.

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