About Us

Board of Directors


James D Phipps

Non-Executive Chairman of the Board

B.A. (Philosophy), J.D. (Law)

Mr Phipps is a strategic advisor, business executive, and lawyer with extensive international and Middle East experience.

Mr Phipps currently serves as Co-Chairman of Sheffield United Football Club, the first "United" and the first association football club worldwide and a founding member of the English Premiere League.

Mr Phipps co-chairs Blades Leisure Limited, which holds SUFC and other operating companies, including security and event management companies. He chairs Shout TV, Inc., a Lindon, Utah, based sports entertainment business and serves and principal advisor to His Royal Highness Prince Abdullah bin Mosaad bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, providing strategic advice relative to a worldwide portfolio of businesses, properties and investments. He sits on the board of the publicly listed Saudi Paper Manufacturing Company (Tadawul: 2300), the leading manufacturer of tissue paper products in the Gulf Region.

Mr Phipps has experience in corporate turnarounds and has served as chief executive or general manager at a number of companies in a turn-around capacity. He brings experience to the board in the context of Alara's G.C.C. endeavours.


Justin Richard

Managing Director & CEO


Mr Richard is an accomplished corporate lawyer and business manager who has played a key role in helping build and maintain Alara’s international joint venture relationships. He has been the Company’s General Counsel since 2011 and in 2013 took up residence in Riyadh as Alara’s Country Manager for Saudi Arabia. The Company later expanded his role to include management of Alara’s joint venture companies in Oman.

Prior to joining Alara, Mr Richard worked as Senior Commercial Officer & Contracts Specialist with Bateman Engineering (Australia), Corporate Counsel and head of legal for UGL Limited’s resources division and as a lawyer in Minter Ellison’s Construction, Engineering and Infrastructure group.

Before entering the legal profession, Mr Richard enjoyed a successful career in private enterprise as Managing Director of Irrigate Australia.

Mr Richard has attained an Executive MBA from London Business School, a Bachelor’s degree in Law from University of Western Australia and is a Fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia.

Vikas Jain

Non-Executive Director

Master of Business Administration

Mr Jain holds an MBA obtained in the USA and as a wealth of experience encompassing around 15 years in the field of mineral exploration and allied activities, including open-pit mining.

Mr Jain is currently Managing Director and CEO of the Indian compnay South West Pinnacle Exploration P/L, a company he founded in 2006 and under his leadership grew to become a leading exploration company in India.

After starting in mineral exploration, South West Pinnacle has since added coal-bed methane production, transportation, geophysical logging and other geological activities to its domain.


Atmavireshwar Sthapak

Executive Director

Bachelor of Applied Science and Master of Technology, Applied Geology

Mr Sthapak is a geologist specialising in mineral resource exploration and evaluation studies. He joined Alara in 2011, making valuable contributions to the Company as an Exploration Manager and a Study Manager based in Muscat, including discovery of large VMS copper mineralisation extensions at the Washihi project in Oman.

Prior to Alara, Mr Sthapak’s career spanned 10 years with ACC / ACC-CRA Ltd, and 10 years with Rio Tinto (Australasia) where he was awarded a Rio Tinto Discovery Award in 2009. He has worked on world class deposits, including Mt. Isa type copper deposits in Australia, and copper, gold and diamond mines on four continents.


Ian Gregory

Alternate Director and Company Secretary


Mr Gregory is a professionally well-connected Director and Company Secretary with over 30 years’ experience in the provision of company secretarial, governance and business administration services with listed and unlisted companies in a variety of industries, including oil and gas, exploration, mining, mineral processing, banking and insurance.  He also has expertise which includes launching successful start-up operations through the development of the company secretarial role and board reporting processes.

Mr Gregory currently consults on company secretarial and governance matters to a number of listed companies.

Prior to founding his own consulting Company Secretarial business in 2005 Mr Gregory was the Company Secretary of Iluka Resources Ltd (6 years), IBJ Australia Bank Ltd Group, the Australian operations of The Industrial Bank of Japan (12 years), and the Griffin Coal Mining Group of companies (4 years). He is a past member and Chairman of the Western Australian Branch Council of Governance Institute of Australia (GIA) and has also served on the National Council of GIA.