Embattled John Furlong gets new gold gig

A junior Vancouver mining company that is exploring for gold in Albania has appointed ex-VANOC CEO John Furlong to its advisory board.

John Furlong: supported by his colleagues and corporate community

A junior Vancouver mining company that is exploring for gold in Albania has appointed ex-VANOC CEO John Furlong to its advisory board.

“We believe that his range of experiences as a leader in the private and public sectors, in Canada and abroad, will prove to be a major asset for Arian as it continues to expand its exploration activities,” said Zahir “Zip” Dhanani, CEO of Arian Resources Corp. (TSX-V:ARC) in a July 8 news release.

Furlong, who chairs the Vancouver Whitecaps, Own the Podium and Rocky Mountaineer and is a director of Whistler Blackcomb and Canadian Tire, has kept a low public profile since last fall’s publication of a Georgia Straight article about his early years in Canada that included allegations of child abuse.

Furlong filed a defamation lawsuit last November against the newspaper and journalist Laura Robinson, but has not made a court rebuttal to their January defence statements, which contain more allegations of abuse.

Furlong’s third wife, Deborah Sharp, died after an April 11 head-on car crash near their house in Gorey, Ireland. Irish police continue to investigate.

The Arian news release said Furlong acquired “significant units” in the company that were offered in a private placement announced April 11.

“Each unit is comprised of one common share and one share purchase warrant at an exercise price of $0.15 per share for a period of five years,” said the release, which said the company expects to grant Furlong an option to buy more shares.

Furlong’s appointment followed the July 3 naming of former BC Hydro chairman Mossadiq Umedaly as Arian’s advisory board chair. Umedaly chaired the Crown utility from 2007 to 2009 when Dan Doyle, who was VANOC’s executive vice-president of construction, took over. Doyle quit BC Hydro’s board last year to become Premier Christy Clark’s chief of staff.

Umedaly, the Enecsys Ltd. chairman and former Ballard Power Systems CFO, bought one-third of the 3 million Arian shares available in the private placement.

In March 2011, Arian acquired outstanding shares of the Australian company Jab Resources Ltd., whose principal asset was the Kacinar Gold exploration project in Albania.

BMackin@biv.com

@bobmackin