Kimberley Mineral Sands Community Newsletter May 2024

ZIA Conference Delegates Visit Thunderbird

We were pleased to welcome a delegation of international visitors to Thunderbird last week who represented various mineral sands businesses from China, Singapore, Japan, France, Australia and Ireland.

The group was in Perth to attend the annual Zircon Industry Association conference which takes place in a different global city each year. As part of the conference program delegates were invited to visit various mineral sands project around the state.

On Thunderbird, the group were taken on a site tour to look at the pit, Dry Mining Unit and Process Plant, and had the opportunity to see the processing underway.

Back in Broome, the group then visited Willie Creek Pearls for a taste of pearling history and finished with a spectacular smoky sunset at the Golf Club.

ZIA Visit - site visit to Thunderbird Operations

Inaugural Business Development Workshops

The inaugural Business Development Workshops were recently held in Derby and Broome, targeting local Aboriginal people who run a business or who want to start a business.

The aim of these workshops was to provide an opportunity to not only increase chances of potentially securing work with Thunderbird, but to also develop business models for sustainable opportunities throughout the whole Kimberley and beyond.

The workshops were delivered by Richard Wilkes from XS Advisory, who is an expert in guiding businesses to prosper, and Annie Ashworth, who is an Indigenous business and community banking specialist.

The workshop participants ranged from limited business knowledge to those who have been running their businesses successfully and wanting to take it to the next level.

I got so much information and will now go back and change a lot of things in my business”

Yansteel celebrates delivery of first shipment

Our Joint Venture partner Yansteel recently celebrated the arrival of the first bulk shipment of ilmenite concentrate from Thunderbird on board the vessel Yu Ling Long with a ceremony to mark the occasion. KMS and Yansteel Board Member Mr Wencong Mo travelled to Caofeidian Port in Tangshan, China to welcome the arrival of the first cargo.

100% of the ilmenite concentrate produced at Thunderbird will be shipped to Yansteel for use in their new titanium pigment production facility.

Birragun Buru Partnership with Yawuru

Nyamba Buru Yawuru is constructing fifteen new homes in the Birragun Buru Estate, Cable Beach, with Kimberley Mineral Sands (KMS) supporting the development through a long-term lease arrangement for six of the properties.

Completed by local builder HM Tracey Construction, the new houses will be rented by Kimberley Mineral Sands employees and contractors.

KMS Chief Operating Officer Michael Rose said the new homes not only provided accommodation for new employees but would free up homes in the private rental market for other local people.

“As we all know, the housing market is extremely tight, and this partnership will help to secure accommodation for relocating staff or those employees whose leases are ending. It is one of multiple tactics in our strategy to minimise impact on the local housing market, which also includes incentives for staff purchasing homes”.

Nyamba Buru Yawuru CEO Nini Mills welcomed the long-term arrangement that had helped construct the homes.

“One of the key solutions to the current rental issues is to increase supply across the housing continuum. Having the security of a long-term lease arrangement and guaranteed rental income has helped us to deliver these properties into the market”.

Six of the houses are now completed with the other nine homes in the development due to be completed in June.

Acknowledging National Reconciliation Week

This week is National Reconciliation Week (NRW), a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.

Aligned to our corporate value of inclusivity and in recognition of this commitment, KMS employees received one of two books written by Aboriginal authors - Cindy Solonec (Nigena (Nyikina)) and Elfie Shiosaki (Noongar).

Debesa tells an extraordinary and heartfelt story that chronicles the lives of the Rodriguez family of Debesa Station in the West Kimberley.

Homecoming pieces together fragments of stories about four generations of Noongar women and explores how they navigated the changing landscapes of colonisation, protectionism, and assimilation to hold their families together.

Recruitment Update

We are currently recruiting for the following positions:

Superintendent Engineering & Reliability - Closing Sunday 2 June

Mine Surveyor - Closing Sunday 2 June

Mine Geologist - Closing Sunday 9 June

Plant Metallurgist - Closing Sunday 9 June

Medical Emergency Services Officer - Closing Sunday 9 June

Please apply via the online links. If you have any queries, please contact our People team via

For a full list of positions available at Thunderbird, including with our contractors, please visit Seek.

Workforce Numbers

April 2024

The figures below represent staff numbers for Kimberley Mineral Sands and our primary contractors at Thunderbird.

Local and Aboriginal Business Spend

April 2024