Smith helms Noranda’s trip from private to public firm

Oct 01, 2010 | 05:46 AM | Anne Riley

Noranda Aluminum Holding Corp. is growing up. Once a small subsidiary of both Falconbridge Ltd. and Xstrata Plc, then a privately held asset of investment fund Apollo Management LP, Noranda has finally stepped into the public spotlight on its own two feet—and according to its top executive, its stance has never been stronger.

"It's a real transformation going from a small part of a large company to being an independent company owned by private equity and now a publicly owned company. The company was really on a journey, and the IPO (initial public offering) was a step in that journey," Layle K. "Kip" Smith, president and chief executive officer of Noranda, said in an interview at AMM's head office in New York.

Each step in that journey has brought its own challenges, Smith said, particularly Noranda's original transition from a back-to-back unit of two large mining conglomerates to a stand-alone entity. "There are structural issues when you do a carve-out. There are some things you have to deal with when you go from being a small part of a big company—you have to build your own process backbone, you're (used to being) reliant on corporate to do a lot of things and your identity is really aligned with a much bigger organization," he said.....

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