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Company > Freeport-McMoRan: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Freeport-McMoRan: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Published: May 04, 2023

Inside This Article


    In this blog article, we will delve into the business model of Freeport-McMoRan, a global mining company, and analyze its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats through a SWOT analysis. As we explore the company's strategies, operations, and financial performance, we will also identify its key competitors in the industry. By gaining insights into Freeport-McMoRan's business model and evaluating its competitive landscape, we hope to provide a comprehensive overview of the company's position in 2023.

    What You Will Learn:

    • Who owns Freeport-McMoRan and the implications it has on the company's operations and decision-making process.
    • The mission statement of Freeport-McMoRan and how it guides the company's overall direction and goals.
    • How Freeport-McMoRan generates revenue and sustains its business through its diverse range of activities and income streams.
    • An in-depth explanation of the Freeport-McMoRan Business Model Canvas, highlighting its key components and how they contribute to the company's success.
    • An overview of Freeport-McMoRan's main competitors in the industry and their potential impact on the company's market position.
    • A comprehensive SWOT analysis of Freeport-McMoRan, examining its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in the current business landscape.

    Who owns Freeport-McMoRan?

    Major Shareholders

    Freeport-McMoRan, a leading international mining company, has a diverse shareholder base. Let's take a closer look at some of its major shareholders:

    1. Institutional Investors: Institutional investors play a significant role in owning Freeport-McMoRan. These include mutual funds, pension funds, and other investment firms. Notable institutional shareholders include Vanguard Group, BlackRock, and State Street Corporation. These institutions often hold substantial stakes in the company, which reflects their confidence in Freeport-McMoRan's long-term growth potential.

    2. Insiders and Executives: Insiders and executives of Freeport-McMoRan also hold a substantial amount of the company's shares. These individuals, including directors and top management, often have a deep understanding of the company's operations and future prospects. Their significant ownership aligns their interests with those of the shareholders, reinforcing their commitment to the company's success.

    3. Retail Investors: Retail investors, including individual shareholders, also own a portion of Freeport-McMoRan. These investors typically purchase shares through brokerage accounts or participate in employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs). Retail investors' ownership reflects the company's popularity among individual investors who recognize its potential for generating returns.

    Ownership Structure

    Freeport-McMoRan's ownership structure can be classified as a publicly traded company. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol FCX. As a public company, Freeport-McMoRan's shares are available for purchase by any interested investor in the open market.

    The company's ownership is distributed among a large number of shareholders, both institutional and retail, who collectively hold the outstanding shares. Freeport-McMoRan's ownership structure provides investors with an opportunity to participate in the company's growth and success.


    Freeport-McMoRan's ownership is diverse, with institutional investors, insiders, executives, and retail investors all holding stakes in the company. This broad ownership base reflects the confidence of investors in Freeport-McMoRan's potential and its position as a leading mining company. As a publicly traded company, Freeport-McMoRan offers investors the opportunity to be part of its success story through owning its shares.

    What is the mission statement of Freeport-McMoRan?

    The Mission Statement of Freeport-McMoRan: Empowering Sustainable Progress

    Freeport-McMoRan, a leading international mining company, has a clear and concise mission statement that reflects its commitment to sustainable progress. The mission statement of Freeport-McMoRan is centered around empowering sustainable development through responsible mining practices, environmental stewardship, and community engagement.

    As a global leader in the mining industry, Freeport-McMoRan recognizes the importance of conducting business in a way that minimizes its impact on the environment while maximizing benefits for local communities. Their mission statement serves as a guiding principle for all their operations, ensuring that they operate in a manner that aligns with their core values and long-term sustainability goals.

    The mission statement highlights the company's dedication to responsible mining practices. Freeport-McMoRan aims to extract valuable minerals and resources in a manner that minimizes environmental impact and promotes the well-being of the ecosystems in which they operate. By utilizing advanced technologies and implementing best practices, they strive to minimize land disturbance, reduce emissions, and conserve water resources.

    Moreover, the mission statement emphasizes Freeport-McMoRan's commitment to environmental stewardship. The company recognizes its responsibility to protect and preserve the natural environments surrounding its operations. By implementing robust environmental management systems, they aim to rehabilitate and restore disturbed lands, mitigate biodiversity loss, and contribute to the overall conservation of the areas where they operate.

    Community engagement is another crucial aspect of Freeport-McMoRan's mission statement. The company understands that its success is intertwined with the well-being of the communities it operates in. They strive to create positive social and economic impacts by collaborating with local stakeholders, investing in education and healthcare, and supporting community development projects. By fostering strong relationships and actively listening to the needs of local communities, Freeport-McMoRan aims to be a responsible corporate citizen and contribute to the sustainable development of the regions in which they operate.

    In conclusion, Freeport-McMoRan's mission statement encapsulates their commitment to empowering sustainable progress through responsible mining practices, environmental stewardship, and community engagement. This mission statement serves as a guiding principle for the company, ensuring that they operate in a manner that aligns with their core values and contributes to long-term sustainability. By adhering to their mission, Freeport-McMoRan strives to make a positive impact on the environment and the communities they serve while delivering value to their stakeholders.

    How does Freeport-McMoRan make money?

    Mining Operations

    One major source of revenue for Freeport-McMoRan is its mining operations. The company is primarily engaged in the extraction and production of copper, gold, and molybdenum. Freeport-McMoRan operates several large-scale mining complexes around the world, including in North America, South America, and Indonesia.

    Copper, being one of the most widely used metals in various industries, forms a significant portion of Freeport-McMoRan's mining operations. The company extracts copper ore from its mines and processes it into copper concentrate or cathodes, which are then sold to customers globally. The demand for copper is driven by its applications in construction, electrical wiring, transportation, and telecommunications, among others.

    In addition to copper, Freeport-McMoRan also mines gold and molybdenum. Gold is a precious metal highly valued for its aesthetic appeal and serves as a store of value. The company's gold mining operations contribute to its revenue through the sale of gold bullion or gold concentrate. Molybdenum, on the other hand, is primarily used as an alloying agent in the production of steel, providing strength and corrosion resistance.

    Smelting and Refining

    Apart from its mining operations, Freeport-McMoRan also generates revenue through smelting and refining activities. These processes involve transforming raw materials, such as copper concentrate or gold doré, into refined products ready for further use or sale.

    The company operates smelters and refineries where it processes copper concentrate obtained from its mining operations into copper cathodes and copper rod. These refined copper products are then sold to customers worldwide, including manufacturers of electrical equipment, construction companies, and other industrial sectors.

    Furthermore, Freeport-McMoRan's smelting and refining facilities also handle gold doré, a semi-pure alloy of gold and silver. The company processes gold doré into refined gold bars, which can be sold directly to the market or used for manufacturing purposes.

    Oil and Gas Exploration

    In recent years, Freeport-McMoRan has diversified its revenue streams by venturing into the oil and gas industry. The company's oil and gas exploration activities focus primarily on shale resources in the United States.

    Through its subsidiary, Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas LLC, the company explores, develops, and produces oil and natural gas from its extensive land holdings. Revenue is generated through the sale of crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids to various customers, including refineries, utilities, and petrochemical companies.

    By leveraging its expertise in resource extraction and development, Freeport-McMoRan has expanded its operations beyond mining, enabling the company to capture opportunities in the energy sector and diversify its sources of income.

    Other Revenue Streams

    In addition to its core mining, smelting, refining, and oil and gas operations, Freeport-McMoRan also derives revenue from other sources. These include the sale of by-products obtained during the mining and refining processes, such as silver, rhenium, and sulfuric acid.

    Moreover, the company may engage in hedging activities to manage commodity price risks, which can generate income or offset potential losses in volatile markets.

    Overall, Freeport-McMoRan's revenue generation stems from its diverse portfolio of mining operations, smelting and refining activities, oil and gas exploration, as well as other ancillary revenue streams. By strategically capitalizing on various natural resources and adapting to market demands, the company maintains a robust financial performance in the resource industry.

    Freeport-McMoRan Business Model Canvas Explained


    The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management tool that provides a visual representation of a company's key components and how they interact to create value for the business and its customers. In this section, we will delve into the Freeport-McMoRan Business Model Canvas to better understand the company's operations and the factors driving its success in the mining industry.

    Key Partnerships

    Freeport-McMoRan understands the importance of strategic partnerships in driving its business forward. The company collaborates with various stakeholders, including governments, local communities, suppliers, and customers. These partnerships are crucial in securing access to mineral resources, obtaining necessary permits and licenses, and fostering positive relationships with the communities where the company operates.

    Moreover, Freeport-McMoRan actively engages in joint ventures and strategic alliances with other mining companies to share risks, leverage expertise, and optimize resource utilization. These partnerships enable the company to expand its operational footprint, explore new mining opportunities, and enhance its overall competitiveness in the industry.

    Key Activities

    As a leading mining company, Freeport-McMoRan engages in a range of key activities to extract, process, and market minerals. These activities include exploration, mining, milling, smelting, refining, and sales. The company invests heavily in exploration to identify and assess potential mineral deposits, utilizing advanced technologies and geological expertise.

    Once a mineral deposit is discovered, Freeport-McMoRan employs mining techniques tailored to the specific characteristics of each site, such as open-pit or underground mining. The extracted minerals are then processed, refined, and transformed into marketable products. The company's extensive milling, smelting, and refining capabilities ensure the production of high-quality metals and minerals.

    Furthermore, Freeport-McMoRan actively engages in sales and marketing activities to distribute its products globally. The company maintains long-term contracts with customers, including major manufacturing industries, to secure a stable demand for its minerals and metals.

    Key Resources

    Freeport-McMoRan's success hinges upon its access to and utilization of key resources. The company's primary resource is its extensive portfolio of mineral reserves, including copper, gold, molybdenum, and others. These reserves are strategically located in various regions, providing a diversified source of minerals and reducing operational risks.

    Additionally, Freeport-McMoRan relies on advanced technologies and equipment to extract and process minerals efficiently. The company continually invests in state-of-the-art mining equipment, infrastructure, and research and development to stay at the forefront of technological advancements in the industry.

    Moreover, the company's workforce plays a pivotal role as a valuable resource. Freeport-McMoRan prioritizes the safety, training, and development of its employees to ensure they possess the necessary skills and knowledge required to operate in a challenging mining environment.

    Value Proposition

    Freeport-McMoRan's value proposition lies in its ability to provide a secure and sustainable supply of high-quality minerals and metals to meet the ever-growing global demand. The company's extensive mineral reserves, advanced technologies, and operational expertise enable it to consistently deliver a wide range of products that meet customer specifications and industry standards.

    Furthermore, Freeport-McMoRan actively embraces sustainable practices and strives to minimize environmental impacts while maximizing social and economic benefits. By implementing robust environmental management systems, engaging in community development initiatives, and adhering to responsible mining practices, the company enhances its value proposition and strengthens its reputation as a socially responsible mining company.


    The Freeport-McMoRan Business Model Canvas provides a comprehensive overview of the company's operations, partnerships, key activities, resources, and value proposition. By understanding these components, we can appreciate the strategic approach that has allowed Freeport-McMoRan to thrive in the mining industry. As the company continues to innovate and adapt to evolving market dynamics, it is well-positioned to sustain its success and contribute to the global supply of essential minerals and metals.

    Which companies are the competitors of Freeport-McMoRan?


    When analyzing the competitive landscape of a company like Freeport-McMoRan, it is essential to identify its main competitors. Understanding the key players within the industry helps gain insights into market dynamics, pricing strategies, and potential threats. In the case of Freeport-McMoRan, several companies compete in the same sector and pose a challenge to its market position. Let's take a closer look at some of the significant competitors of Freeport-McMoRan.

    1. Rio Tinto

    Rio Tinto is a global mining and metals company that directly competes with Freeport-McMoRan in various aspects of their operations. With a diversified portfolio including aluminum, copper, iron ore, and other minerals, Rio Tinto shares similar interests and targets similar markets. The company's strong financial position and global presence make it a formidable competitor for Freeport-McMoRan.

    2. BHP Group

    BHP Group, formerly known as BHP Billiton, is another major competitor of Freeport-McMoRan. This multinational mining company operates across several continents and focuses on extracting and processing various natural resources, including copper, iron ore, coal, and petroleum. BHP Group's extensive operations and vast resource base allow it to compete directly with Freeport-McMoRan in terms of production capacity and market share.

    3. Anglo American plc

    Anglo American plc is a global mining company that competes with Freeport-McMoRan in the extraction and production of various resources, including copper, platinum, diamonds, and coal. With a diverse portfolio and operations in several countries, Anglo American poses a significant challenge to Freeport-McMoRan's market share, especially in the copper sector, where both companies have a strong presence.

    4. Glencore International AG

    Glencore International AG, a leading multinational commodity trading and mining company, is another notable competitor of Freeport-McMoRan. With a focus on copper, zinc, nickel, and other metals, Glencore's operations span across several countries and involve the entire supply chain, from mining to trading. Their extensive market reach and trading capabilities make them a formidable competitor for Freeport-McMoRan.

    5. Barrick Gold Corporation

    While primarily known for its gold mining operations, Barrick Gold Corporation also competes with Freeport-McMoRan in the copper sector. As one of the largest gold mining companies globally, Barrick Gold's diversified portfolio and significant production capacity allow it to compete directly with Freeport-McMoRan in the mining industry.


    In conclusion, Freeport-McMoRan faces tough competition from several major players in the mining industry. Companies like Rio Tinto, BHP Group, Anglo American plc, Glencore International AG, and Barrick Gold Corporation pose significant challenges to Freeport-McMoRan's market share and overall competitiveness. Understanding the landscape of these competitors is crucial for Freeport-McMoRan to devise effective strategies, adapt to market dynamics, and maintain its position as a leading mining company.

    Freeport-McMoRan SWOT Analysis


    1. Diverse Portfolio: Freeport-McMoRan boasts a diverse portfolio of mineral assets, including copper, gold, and molybdenum. This diversification allows the company to mitigate risks associated with fluctuations in commodity prices and maintain a stable revenue stream.

    2. Strong Financial Performance: The company has consistently delivered strong financial results, with stable revenue growth and robust profitability. This financial strength enables Freeport-McMoRan to invest in new projects, expand its operations, and pursue strategic acquisitions.

    3. Technological Expertise: Freeport-McMoRan has a proven track record of leveraging advanced mining technologies to improve operational efficiency and reduce costs. The company's expertise in mining techniques, including block caving and underground mining, gives it a competitive edge in maximizing resource recovery and minimizing environmental impacts.


    1. Dependence on Copper: While Freeport-McMoRan's diverse portfolio is a strength, its heavy reliance on copper exposes the company to the risks associated with fluctuations in copper prices. Any significant decline in copper prices could adversely impact the company's financial performance and profitability.

    2. Environmental and Social Concerns: Mining activities inherently involve environmental and social impacts, and Freeport-McMoRan has faced criticism in the past for its environmental practices and community relations. As sustainability becomes an increasingly important factor in the mining industry, the company needs to address these concerns and implement measures to mitigate its environmental footprint.


    1. Growing Global Demand for Copper: The increasing demand for copper in various industries, including electric vehicles, renewable energy, and infrastructure development, presents a significant opportunity for Freeport-McMoRan. The company can capitalize on this trend by expanding its copper production capacity and exploring new copper deposits worldwide.

    2. Strategic Acquisitions: Freeport-McMoRan can leverage its strong financial position to pursue strategic acquisitions and consolidate its market position. Acquiring complementary mining assets or companies can further diversify its portfolio and enhance its operational efficiencies.


    1. Volatile Commodity Prices: Commodity prices, including copper, are subject to significant volatility due to factors such as global economic conditions, geopolitical tensions, and supply-demand dynamics. A prolonged period of low copper prices can negatively impact Freeport-McMoRan's profitability and cash flow.

    2. Regulatory and Political Risks: Mining operations are subject to complex regulatory frameworks and political risks, including changes in mining laws, government policies, and geopolitical conflicts. Freeport-McMoRan operates in multiple countries, exposing it to regulatory uncertainties and geopolitical instabilities that could disrupt its operations and hinder future growth.

    Key Takeaways

    • Freeport-McMoRan is a publicly traded company, owned by a diverse group of shareholders who hold its stock.
    • The mission statement of Freeport-McMoRan is to responsibly provide copper, gold, and molybdenum, essential elements for modern life, while also respecting the environment and communities.
    • Freeport-McMoRan generates revenue through the mining and production of copper, gold, and molybdenum. It sells these commodities to customers worldwide.
    • The Freeport-McMoRan Business Model Canvas explains the company's key activities, resources, partners, value proposition, customer segments, channels, cost structure, and revenue streams.
    • Competitors of Freeport-McMoRan include mining companies such as BHP Group, Rio Tinto, and Anglo American. These companies also operate in the mining and production of copper, gold, and other minerals.
    • A SWOT analysis of Freeport-McMoRan highlights its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This analysis provides insights into the company's internal and external factors that impact its performance and competitiveness.


    In conclusion, Freeport-McMoRan is a leading mining company that operates globally. It is owned by a diverse group of institutional and individual investors, with no single majority owner. The mission statement of Freeport-McMoRan focuses on responsible mining, sustainable development, and enhancing stakeholder value.

    The company generates revenue through its mining operations, primarily extracting copper, gold, and molybdenum. Their business model is supported by a strong operational efficiency, strategic partnerships, and a commitment to environmental stewardship.

    Freeport-McMoRan faces intense competition from other mining giants such as Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, and Anglo American. These companies operate on a similar scale and target similar markets, resulting in a highly competitive landscape.

    Conducting a SWOT analysis on Freeport-McMoRan reveals its strengths in terms of a diversified portfolio, extensive mining infrastructure, and strong financial performance. However, it also faces weaknesses in the form of vulnerability to commodity price fluctuations and potential environmental risks. Opportunities for the company lie in expanding into new markets and investing in technology, while threats come from geopolitical uncertainties and regulatory challenges.

    Overall, Freeport-McMoRan is a well-established player in the mining industry, driven by its commitment to responsible practices and sustainable development. With a solid business model and a competitive spirit, the company continues to thrive in a challenging market.


    What are the 5 elements of SWOT analysis?

    The five elements of SWOT analysis are:

    1. Strengths: These are the internal factors or resources that give an organization an advantage over its competitors. Strengths could include a strong brand image, a talented workforce, or unique products or services.

    2. Weaknesses: These are the internal factors that put an organization at a disadvantage compared to its competitors. Weaknesses could include a lack of resources, poor customer service, or outdated technology.

    3. Opportunities: These are external factors that could positively impact an organization's growth or success. Opportunities could arise from market trends, new technologies, or changes in customer preferences.

    4. Threats: These are external factors that could potentially harm an organization's performance or operations. Threats could include competition, changing regulations, or economic downturns.

    5. Trends: While not always explicitly mentioned as a separate element, analyzing trends is often considered an important part of SWOT analysis. This involves identifying patterns or shifts in the industry or market that could impact an organization's strategy or decision-making.

    What are 3 examples of strengths in SWOT analysis?

    Three examples of strengths in a SWOT analysis could be:

    1. Strong brand reputation: A company that has a well-established and positive brand reputation will have a competitive advantage over its rivals. This strength can lead to increased customer loyalty, trust, and market share.

    2. Skilled workforce: A company with highly skilled and knowledgeable employees is a valuable strength. A skilled workforce can contribute to innovative ideas, efficient operations, and high-quality products or services.

    3. Cost leadership: If a company is able to produce goods or offer services at a lower cost than its competitors without compromising quality, it can gain a significant competitive advantage. Cost leadership is a strength that can result in higher profit margins and market dominance.

    What is the weakness in SWOT analysis?

    One weakness of SWOT analysis is that it can oversimplify complex issues. By categorizing factors into four broad categories (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats), it may not adequately capture the nuances and interdependencies among various factors. This oversimplification can hinder a comprehensive understanding of the organization's situation.

    Additionally, SWOT analysis does not prioritize or weigh the importance of each factor or consider the potential impact of external factors on internal ones. It treats all factors equally, which may not accurately reflect their significance or potential impact on the organization.

    Furthermore, SWOT analysis is often conducted as a one-time assessment, which does not account for the dynamic nature of organizations and their environments. Factors can change over time, and new ones may emerge, making the initial SWOT analysis outdated or incomplete.

    Lastly, SWOT analysis does not provide specific guidance or strategies for addressing the identified issues. It is a descriptive tool, not a prescriptive one, so it may not provide clear recommendations for decision-making and problem-solving.

    What is SWOT analysis and examples?

    SWOT analysis is a strategic planning technique used to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of a person, organization, or project. It helps in understanding the current situation and making informed decisions.

    Examples of SWOT analysis:

    1. Company SWOT analysis:

      • Strengths: Strong brand reputation, skilled workforce, innovative products.
      • Weaknesses: Limited market presence, high employee turnover, outdated technology.
      • Opportunities: Emerging markets, new product development, strategic partnerships.
      • Threats: Intense competition, changing consumer preferences, economic downturn.
    2. Personal SWOT analysis:

      • Strengths: Excellent communication skills, strong network, problem-solving abilities.
      • Weaknesses: Lack of experience in certain areas, limited industry knowledge.
      • Opportunities: Career advancement opportunities, networking events, further education.
      • Threats: Technological advancements impacting job security, economic instability.
    3. Project SWOT analysis:

      • Strengths: Skilled project team, strong financial backing, clear project goals.
      • Weaknesses: Tight project timeline, limited resources, inexperienced team members.
      • Opportunities: Collaboration with external partners, technological advancements.
      • Threats: Regulatory changes, unexpected delays, budget constraints.

    These are just a few examples, and SWOT analysis can be applied to various scenarios to evaluate the internal and external factors influencing the situation.

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