The Rio Tinto Group is a global leader in natural resource development and innovative solutions, with operations in more than 40 countries across six continents. Established in 1873, Rio Tinto has grown to become a major diversified mining, exploration and technology company, with a strong portfolio of assets and operations in the metals and minerals, energy and industrial minerals, and oil and gas markets.
It is one of the world's largest mining, metals and minerals businesses, with a diverse portfolio of products and services. Rio Tinto produces a range of materials including copper, aluminium, iron ore, coal, diamonds and uranium, as well as industrial minerals such as borates and titanium dioxide. The company also provides rail transportation, port services and related services to customers worldwide. Rio Tinto is headquartered in London and has offices in Australia, Canada, China, India, Japan, Singapore and the United States.
The Group's operations span the globe and include bauxite, copper, diamond, gold, iron ore, uranium, and other industrial minerals. Rio Tinto is committed to developing and delivering sustainable solutions that meet the needs of its customers and society, while also contributing to economic, social and environmental progress.
The Rio Tinto Company was founded in 1873 when a group of British and European investors formed the company to reopen ancient copper mines beside the Rio Tinto (meaning red river) in Huelva, Spain. Rio Tinto Group was formed on April 29, 1962, through the merger of two mining companies: Rio Tinto Company (UK) and Consolidated Zinc Corporation (Australia). The new company was created to consolidate the two companies operations in mining, exploration, and production, and became one of the largest mining companies in the world.
In 1969, Rio Tinto Group acquired Northparkes, a copper and gold mine in New South Wales, Australia. The acquisition marked the company's first significant move into copper mining, which would become a core business for Rio Tinto Group. In 1970, Rio Tinto Group expanded its operations into Canada with the acquisition of Quebec Cartier Mining Company, a major iron ore producer in Quebec. The acquisition marked the company's first entry into North America.
In 1975, Rio Tinto Group merged with the British mining company, Zinc Corporation, to form Rio Tinto Zinc. The merger brought together two of the world's largest mining companies and helped Rio Tinto Group to expand its operations globally. In 1989, Rio Tinto Group acquired Kennecott Copper, a leading copper producer in the United States. The acquisition marked the company's largest to date and helped to solidify its position as a leading copper producer.
In 1993, Rio Tinto Group launched Rio Tinto Marine, a shipping and logistics company that would transport the company's minerals and products around the world. The launch of Rio Tinto Marine helped to strengthen the company's supply chain and reduce transportation costs. In 1995, Rio Tinto Group merged with CRA Limited, an Australian mining company, to create the world's largest mining company at the time. The merger brought together two of the world's largest producers of iron ore, coal, and aluminium, and helped to increase Rio Tinto Group's production capacity.
Investment in Grasberg Mine, Rio Tinto Group acquired a 40% in 1996 stake in the Grasberg Mine, one of the world's largest gold and copper mines located in Indonesia. The investment marked the company's largest ever single investment and helped to increase its exposure to the fast-growing Asian market.
In 2006, Rio Tinto Group formed a joint venture with Ivanhoe Mines to develop the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold mine in Mongolia. The mine, which began production in 2013, is one of the largest undeveloped copper and gold deposits in the world.
In 2008, Rio Tinto Group announced that it had secured a $19.5 billion investment from Chinalco, China's state-owned aluminum producer. The investment marked the largest-ever foreign investment by a Chinese company and helped to strengthen Rio Tinto
In 2018, Rio Tinto Group announced its plans to divest its coal assets, including interests in mines in Australia and Indonesia. The divestment was completed in 2020 and marked the company's shift towards more environmentally sustainable operations. Also in 2018, Rio Tinto Group resolved a long-running dispute over its Simandou iron ore project in Guinea, West Africa. The dispute, which had been ongoing since 2011, was resolved through a settlement with the government of Guinea, which resulted in Rio Tinto Group transferring its interest in the project to a Chinese consortium.
In 2019, Rio Tinto Group received approval for the Koodaideri iron ore project in Western Australia. The project, which is expected to be one of the largest iron ore mines in the region, will use advanced technology to improve operational efficiency and reduce the company's environmental impact.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on Rio Tinto Group's operations, as it has for many companies around the world. The company has implemented measures to protect its employees and ensure the continuity of its operations, including implementing remote work policies and reducing its workforce at some locations
In January 2021, Rio Tinto Group appointed Jakob Stausholm as its new CEO, following the resignation of Jean-Sébastien Jacques in the wake of the Juukan Gorge incident. Stausholm, a former CFO at the company, has been tasked with restoring trust and confidence in the company's operations. Also in 2021, Rio Tinto Group announced plans to invest $2.4 billion in lithium production in Serbia. The investment is part of the company's strategy to expand its production of materials used in electric vehicle batteries, which are in high demand due to the global shift towards electric vehicles.
The company's focus on environmental sustainability and responsible mining practices, as well as its investments in new technologies and materials, will likely continue to shape its future growth and development.
The mission of Rio Tinto is to “deliver value for its shareholders by finding, mining, and processing minerals and metals that the world needs.”
“The company is committed to being a leader in the mining industry, with a focus on safety, sustainability, and responsible resource development. Rio Tinto's aim is to create long-term value for its stakeholders by operating efficiently and effectively while minimizing its environmental impact and preserving the natural heritage of the communities where it operates. ”
“The company is dedicated to fostering strong relationships with its stakeholders, based on transparency, engagement, and mutual respect.”
Rio Tinto's vision is “to increase shareholder value by exercising their procurement expertise and leveraging Group capabilities.”
Rio Tinto's values include partnering to innovate, abiding entirely by laws and regulations, and abiding by its code of conduct. They also strive to create a future where equality is a guiding light and progress is driven by their employees.
“We act with care by prioritising the physical and emotional safety and wellbeing of those around us. We respect others, build trusting relationships and consider the impact of our actions. We look for ways to contribute to a better future for our people, communities and the planet.”
Mr. Alfredo Barrios BSc Physics, MSc, Ph.D. (Chief Commercial Officer)
Mr. Bold Baatar (Chief Exec. of Copper)
Mr. Simon C. Trott BSc(Hon), GAICD, GradDipFin (Chief Exec. of Iron Ore)
Mr. Menno Gerard Cornelis Sanderse (Head of Investor Relations)
Mr. Ivan Vella (Chief Exec. of Aluminum)
Ms. Sinead Kaufman (Chief Exec. of Minerals)
Mr. Mark Davies (Chief Technical Officer)
Recognition and Awards
Products and Services
Rio Tinto's main business is the production of raw materials including:
- Iron ore
and industrial minerals including:
- Titanium dioxide
- Gypsum and
Mr. Jakob Stausholm M.S., MS (CEO & Exec. Director)
Mr. Peter Lloyd Cunningham B.A. (CFO & Exec. Director)
Mr. Arnaud Soirat (Group Chief Operating Officer)
Energy and Utilities