MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Aug. 8, 2012) - SEMAFO Inc. (TSX:SMF)(OMX:SMF) today announced that Mr. Benoit La Salle, FCPA, FCA is stepping down from the position of President and CEO of the Corporation and has been appointed Executive Vice-Chairman of SEMAFO's Board of Directors. SEMAFO'S Board also announced that Mr. Benoit Desormeaux, CPA, CA, the Corporation's Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer is promoted to the position of President and Chief Executive Officer and appointed to SEMAFO's Board of Directors. These changes will take effect at the close of business today.
"Mr. La Salle brought SEMAFO from a greenfield exploration company in 1995 to a Corporation that today produces some 250,000 ounces of gold annually. Benoit is driven by a passion and desire that serve as the basis for the values that today are the heart of the organization: respect and integrity, excellence, know-how and teamwork. He will continue to play an important role on our Board of Directors," said Jean Lamarre, Executive Chair, SEMAFO Inc., "The Board supports the new leadership that Benoit Desormeaux as President and Chief Executive Officer of SEMAFO will bring to the organization."
Mr. La Salle founded SEMAFO 17 years ago and was President and Chief Executive Officer of the organization since its inception. Mr. La Salle will also assume the positions of President and Chief Executive Officer of SEMAFO Energy and Chair of Fondation SEMAFO, and will continue to support the Board of Directors with specific mandates relating to upholding the Corporation's good relations in West Africa.
Mr. Desormeaux is a Chartered Accountant, a member of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and holds a Commerce Degree. Mr. Desormeaux assumed the position of Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer in 2004, prior to which he was SEMAFO's Chief Financial Officer for many years. Mr. Desormeaux joined SEMAFO in 1997.
"These appointments are consistent with the Corporation's conviction that strong succession planning is key to the ongoing strengthening of our organization," said Benoit La Salle, "It has been a privilege to witness Benoit Desormeaux' evolution over the years and I am very pleased to assist him in the transition to his new role. Benoit has been instrumental to the operational success of the Corporation for many years now. He is responsible for having brought together one of the most admired operations teams in West Africa. I, along with SEMAFO's Board of Directors, are confident that this appointment will ensure strong leadership for the future of the organization."
SEMAFO is a Canadian-based mining company with gold production and exploration activities in West Africa. The Corporation currently operates three gold mines: the Mana Mine in Burkina Faso, the Samira Hill Mine in Niger and the Kiniero Mine in Guinea. SEMAFO is committed to evolve in a conscientious manner to become a major player in its geographical area of interest. SEMAFO's strategic focus is to maximize shareholder value by effectively managing its existing assets as well as pursuing organic and strategic growth opportunities.
The above information has been made public in accordance with the Swedish Securities Market Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act.