February 28, 2000
Dia Met Stock Transferred in Settlement
A geologist who found one of the world's richest diamond deposits has agreed to transfer his stake in Canada's Dia Met Minerals to his estranged wife as part of their divorce settlement.
Charles Fipke, founder, chairman and Dia Met's largest shareholder, will transfer to Marlene Fipke his stock worth about C$123 million (US $85 million), the company announced Feb. 24. The couple had been married for more than 30 years.
Dia Met owns a 29% interest in the Ekati mine, Canada's only operating
diamond mine, in Canada's Northwest Territories. In addition to its investment in the Ekati mine, Dia Met is carrying out an extensive global exploration program that is currently focused on Mauritania, Greenland, Finland and the Canadian North.
Marlene Fipke said she had "no present intention of disposing of these
shares." A company spokesman said the management structure of the company
remains unchanged. "With this settlement in hand, Dia Met will refocus its attention on more
aggressively pursuing various potential initiatives to strengthen our company
and enhance shareholder value," said President and CEO James
Eccott. "Meanwhile, we wish to welcome Mrs. Fipke, whom we have known and respected
for many years, and we look forward to her ongoing contributions and support
as Dia Met moves forward in the months ahead."
- by Mark E. Dixon