Anglo American, one of the world's biggest mining companies, has announced a major restructuring that includes some 85,000 job cuts. The "radical" changes set out by the company will result in almost a third (63%) of its workforce cut, from 135,000 to 50,000.
The restructure of the firm represents one of the biggest overhauls in mining history and includes the reduction of around 60% of its assets in an effort to make the business more resilient. Anglo American is disposing of non-cores and slashing its main portfolio in half.
Mark Cutifani, the miner's chief executive, said in a statement: "Together with the additional material capital, cost saving and productivity measures announced today, we are setting out an accelerated and more aggressive strategic restructuring of the portfolio."
Anglo American said it will further set out the extreme overhaul in February, but already told shareholders on Investor Day that it is extending its target for gains from disposals across the business to £4bn.
In an effort to battle the commodity crisis which is plaguing miners and traders across the world, the FTSE 100 company is moving its London offices together in with its diamond business called de Beers. Anglo American's platinum and base metals division will be run by Industrial Metals and iron ore and coal operations will be taken up by its Bulk Commodities subsidiary.
The problems in the commodities industry have caused thousands of miners to have lost their jobs but the overhaul by Anglo American is the most severe one yet. The oversupply is pushing down prices while China's manufacturing problems are limiting global demand.