Kelowna, B.C., May 16, 2022 – The Valens Company Inc. (TSX: VLNS) (Nasdaq: VLNS) (the “Company”, “The Valens Company” or “Valens”), a leading manufacturer of cannabis products, today announced that it has separated the roles of Chair and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and appointed Andrew Cockwell as its new Chair of the Board, effective immediately. This decision follows the Company’s recent Nasdaq listing and its commitment to governance best practices including transparency and accountability. Tyler Robson has stepped down as Chair in full support of this decision and will remain on the Board and as the CEO of the Company.
About Andrew Cockwell
Mr. Cockwell is the Managing Partner of Ursataur Capital Management, a private equity firm he founded in 2009 that strategically invests in Canadian mid-market companies across various industries. He holds a track record of fostering value creation for both private and public companies, advising on issues such as strategic realignment, operational improvement, capital allocation, and governance. Previously, Mr. Cockwell was a Founding Partner of ReichmannHauer Capital Partners in 2006, a Toronto-based private equity firm targeting both domestic and international investments. He also served in the Private Equity and Corporate Finance practices at global management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, which he joined in 2003 and where he advised businesses, private equity firms, and hedge funds in North America and Europe. Earlier in his career, he practiced M&A and securities law as an attorney at Sullivan & Cromwell in New York and London. Mr. Cockwell holds a breadth of experience providing financial and legal advisory services in a variety of complex business contexts across a wide range of industries, including industrial coatings, ground support, financial services, and food and retail. Mr. Cockwell holds a Bachelor of Art (Hons.) from Queen’s University and a LL.B. with Great Distinction from the Faculty of Law at McGill University.
Tyler Robson, Chief Executive Officer of The Valens Company, said, “Andrew’s proven leadership, combined with his extensive experience in organizational transformation, capital markets and corporate governance makes him an ideal person for this role. Having worked closely with Andrew over the past two years I am convinced that entrusting the Chair to an independent Director of his caliber will deliver numerous advantages for Valens and its shareholders. This change will also allow me to dedicate more of my time to the execution of our strategy and the management of our growth. I look forward to working closely with Andrew to ensure Valens creates long term value for all stakeholders, including our employees, shareholders, and the community.”
Andrew Cockwell, Chair of the Board said “Over the last three years, Valens has made great strides in their commitment to improving corporate governance from its early days as a CSE listed company to eventually dual listing on the TSX and Nasdaq. As we look ahead, the separation of Chair and CEO combined with having a majority independent Board are critical pieces of the puzzle in delivering value not just for our shareholders but for our entire organization. While we are making this announcement today, we will continue to assess opportunities to make further improvements to our governance structure as the business continues to evolve. With this in mind, we have also been going through a governance review process to identify additional Director nominees who will broaden our existing skills matrix and further diversify the experience and contributions we currently employ. On behalf of the entire Board, I’ d like to thank Tyler for his leadership over the past three years as its Chair. I am appreciative to have this opportunity to represent Valens shareholders and I have full confidence in Tyler and the entire senior management team as they continue to execute on the Company’s strategic initiatives and capitalize on this massive opportunity to drive sustainable shareholder value.”
Further to today’s leadership and governance transition, the Company also announced today that it has been granted an extension under the Toronto Stock Exchange (the “TSX”) rules to extend the timeline for its Annual General Meeting of shareholders (the “Meeting”) to no later than August 2, 2022. The Company requires the additional time to identify, attract and nominate additional qualified diverse director candidates to further strengthen the Board in key areas, including diversity, CPG marketing and branding and capital markets. This initiative continues the Company’s ongoing commitment to good governance by bringing it more in-line with benchmark public guidance from U.S national securities exchanges, including Nasdaq. The Company will provide an update on the new date for the Meeting in the coming weeks.
At Valens, it’s Personal.
About The Valens Company
The Valens Company is a leading cannabis consumer products company, with significant expertise in manufacturing cannabinoid-based products and a mission to bring the benefits of cannabis to the world. Valens provides proprietary cannabis processing services and best-in-class product development, manufacturing, and commercialization of cannabis consumer packaged goods. Valens’ high-quality products are formulated for the recreational, health and wellness, and medical consumer segments and are offered across all cannabis product categories, with a focus on quality and product innovation. Valens also manufactures, distributes, and sells a wide range of CBD products in the United States through its subsidiary Green Roads, and distributes medicinal cannabis products to international markets through its subsidiary Valens Australia. In partnership with brand houses, consumer packaged goods companies and licensed cannabis producers around the globe, Valens continues to grow its diverse product portfolio in alignment with evolving cannabis consumer preferences. Through Valens Labs, Valens is setting the standard in cannabis testing and research and development with Canada’s only ISO17025 accredited analytical services lab, named The Centre of Excellence in Plant-Based Science by partner and scientific world leader Thermo Fisher Scientific. Discover more on The Valens Company at http://www.thevalenscompany.com.