May 14, 2012 / 2:27 PM / in 6 years

Baja Mining CEO resigns, shares fall

(Reuters) - Baja Mining Corp BAJ.TO said John Greenslade resigned as the chief executive, after Canadian miner’s top shareholder called for changes in management to revive the company’s flagship project.

Baja, which named board member Tom Ogryzlo as interim CEO, has started looking for a new CEO. Baja had reappointed Ogryzlo to its board earlier this month after he resigned in April.

Mount Kellett Capital Management LP, Baja’s largest shareholder with a near 20 percent stake, demanded the resignation of Greenslade in April, blaming him for a decline in the company’s stock price and poor governance.

The shareholder had also called for the appointment of its nominees Lorie Waisberg and Stephen Lehner to the board. They were both appointed to the board last week.

Baja, which is exploring funding options for its copper-cobalt-zinc project in Mexico, also named Waisberg as chairman. Waisberg replaces Giles Baynham, who had been chairman since January.

Following the changes, Mount Kellett has withdrawn a case filed in Canada’s top court for the appointment of Ernst and Young as an independent inspector of Baja.

Baja last week warned of a funding crisis at its Boleo project due to cost overruns and said it would not be able to proceed beyond mid-June without a cash injection.

A special committee has been formed to consider financing alternatives for the project, which is 70 percent owned by Baja and rest by a Korean consortium.

Baja shares, which have lost nearly two-thirds of their value since the company announced cost overruns in late April, fell as much as 6 percent to 32.5 Canadian cents, their lowest in more than three years, on Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Reporting by Bhaswati Mukhopadhyay in Bangalore; Editing by Viraj Nair

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