Ria Sanz, AngloGold Ashanti Limited

Executive Vice President, Group Legal, Commercial and Governance


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Ria Sanz is Group General Counsel of Johannesburg-based AngloGold Ashanti Limited, the world’s largest emerging-market gold producer with 23 mining operations spanning 11 countries and four continents. The company’s debt and equity securities are traded in Johannesburg and New York, as well as in Ghana and Australia.

Ms. Sanz’s accountabilities include legal and compliance across all the company’s operating jurisdictions, and those in which the company is listed. She sits on AngloGold Ashanti’s Executive Committee and several sub-committees of the Board and is a key member of the company’s Capital Markets Team. She also has direct accountability for Company Secretarial functions and annual integrated reporting, as well as commercial, legal and contractual aspects of Group Supply Chain and the Group corporate budget.

Prior to joining AngloGold Ashanti in 2011, Ms. Sanz was Group Head: Legal & Sustainability at Sappi Ltd., the world’s largest producer of fine paper. Sappi has operations in 20 countries and derives revenue from sales in 100 countries across the globe.

Between 1998 and 2007, Ms. Sanz held various positions at African Oxygen Ltd (Afrox), a member of the London-based BOC plc group during that period. Ms. Sanz was appointed General Counsel: Legal and Commercial for Afrox, later also holding the post of Company Secretary in addition to providing all legal services to Afrox Healthcare, which has since been spun off from the parent. She played for a period the role of General Counsel for the Industrial & Special Products division of BOC plc, as part of her responsibilities and was a member of BOC Legal Leadership Team. Between 1993 and 1998, Ms. Sanz held legal advisory positions with Basil Read Holdings Ltd. and Investec Ltd.

Ms. Sanz was admitted as an attorney of the Supreme Court of South Africa in 1993 after receiving her Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, and her Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce (BCom), majoring in Commercial Law and Economics, from the same university. Ms. Sanz holds a Higher Diploma in Taxation from the University of Johannesburg and also completed a postgraduate course in Sustainability Leadership at the University of Cambridge.

Ms. Sanz, who was born in Spain and has also lived in Canada and South Africa, is fluent in English, French and Spanish and has working knowledge of Italian and Portuguese. She lives in Johannesburg with her husband and two sons, both of whom attend the University of Cape Town.