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Daniel Dienst to leave Sims at end of June

Keywords: Tags  Sims Metal Management, Metals USA, Daniel Dienst, Geoff Brunsdon, Hugo Neu, CIBC, Lisa Gordon

PITTSBURGH — Sims Metal Management Ltd. group chief executive officer Daniel W. Dienst has announced he will retire from the world’s largest metal recycler and resign from the company’s board of directors when his contract expires June 30.

The Sydney-based company hasn’t turned a profit since fiscal 2011 and has been dealt a host of other challenges. Sims’ auto shredder facility at Port of Redwood City, Calif., has come under scrutiny from the Environmental Protection Agency (, Jan. 10, 2012), and the company more recently took a write-down of Australian $78 million ($80.5 million) on its British inventory following an investigation into the overvaluation of inventory at two scrap facilities (, Feb. 15).

Dienst is the man who integrated the purchase of Hugo Neu Corp. into Metal Management Ltd. in 2007 and was a key player in the 2008 marriage between Metal Management and Sims Group Ltd. (, Nov. 1, 2007).

Dienst, a former managing director at New York-based CIBC World Markets Corp., arrived at Metal Management before the merger as a member of its board of directors (, Sept. 19, 2002) and served as chairman of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Metals USA Inc. (, Nov. 17, 2002).

"The board would like to acknowledge the enormous contributions Mr. Dienst has made to the company ... including the integration of Metal Management and Hugo Neu and the establishment of the company’s beachhead in the mainland Chinese market," Sims chairman Geoff Brunsdon said.

Dienst made it clear he is ambivalent about his exodus.

"I make this decision with mixed emotions; it has been a rare privilege to lead such a dedicated group," he said in a statement. "After nine years as chief executive officer, I believe now is the right time to bring the next leader into the organization."

As the board begins its search internally and globally for a replacement, Dienst plans to spearhead any changes needed in its British operations, reduce operating costs and exit nonperforming areas.

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