SOURCE: Hoku Scientific, Inc.

Hoku Scientific, Inc.

February 16, 2010 07:15 ET

Hoku's Chairman, President, and CEO Dustin Shindo Stepping Down

Scott Paul Named President & CEO, and Appointed to Board; Dustin Shindo to Continue as Advisor

HONOLULU, HI--(Marketwire - February 16, 2010) - The board of directors of Hoku Scientific, Inc. (NASDAQ: HOKU), a materials science company focused on clean energy technologies, today announced that Dustin Shindo is stepping down as chairman, president, and chief executive officer, effective March 31, 2010. Scott Paul, Hoku's chief operating officer, has been unanimously approved by the board of directors to succeed Mr. Shindo as president and chief executive officer and has been nominated to serve on the board of directors effective April 1, 2010. Mr. Wei Xia has been named chairman of the board, also effective April 1, and Mr. Shindo plans to continue advising Hoku on strategic and other matters as requested in a consulting capacity.

Mr. Shindo co-founded Hoku in 2001 to develop novel fuel cell technology, and has served as chairman, president, and CEO since the company's inception. Mr. Shindo successfully took Hoku public on the Nasdaq Global Market in 2005, led the company into its solar and polysilicon diversification strategy in 2006, pre-sold $1.8 billion of future polysilicon output, and led the development of Hoku's $390 million polysilicon plant in Pocatello, Idaho, which is scheduled to make its first commercial delivery in the first half of 2010. In 2009, Mr. Shindo successfully negotiated the majority investment by Tianwei New Energy Co., Ltd.

Commenting on Mr. Shindo's resignation, Dr. Karl Stahlkopf, a member of Hoku's board of directors since 2002, said, "Mr. Shindo showed uncommon vision and leadership as Hoku's CEO, especially considering the recent global credit crises and broad economic challenges. We are grateful for his years of service, and we look forward to his continued work as a trusted advisor."

Citing personal reasons and a desire to transition management to the next generation of Hoku's leadership as his reasons for stepping down, Mr. Shindo said, "This was a difficult decision for me, but one made more easy knowing that Scott will assume the CEO role, and by the board's desire and willingness for me to continue in an advisory capacity. Scott and I have served together at Hoku for almost seven years, and I am extremely impressed by his management skills and his vision for the company. I have absolute confidence in Scott's ability to achieve Hoku's goals and to continue growing the company's culture and business."

Mr. Paul first joined Hoku in 2003 as its VP business development and general counsel, and has served as chief operating officer since October 2008. Before joining Hoku, Mr. Paul worked as a corporate attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1998.

Referring to his new role as CEO, Mr. Paul said, "I am humbled by the Board's confidence in me. I look forward to realizing our near-term company goals of initiating polysilicon plant operations, and growing our PV systems business, while looking ahead to growing long-term shareholder value."

Commenting on Mr. Shindo's transition, Mr. Paul said, "Aside from the extraordinary self-sacrifice and hard work that Dustin has put into making Hoku a success, he is a gifted, natural leader and an incomparable business strategist, so I'm pleased that he will continue as a key advisor in the months ahead."

Mr. Wei Xia, vice general manager of Baoding Tianwei Group, and a member of Hoku's board of directors, said, "The board of directors was hopeful that Mr. Shindo would continue as CEO for a longer period of time. However, we understand Mr. Shindo's reasons for stepping down, and we are extremely confident in Mr. Paul's ability to lead Hoku as the company completes construction and begins operating its polysilicon plant this year."

The company also announced that Jerrod Schreck has been promoted to chief strategy officer, a newly approved executive management position. His appointment will be effective on April 1, 2010.

Mr. Schreck first joined the company in 2008 and is currently Hoku's VP business development. Prior to joining Hoku, Mr. Schreck served as a commissioned officer in the United States Navy. His primary role as chief strategy officer will be to grow the company's revenues in its solar and polysilicon businesses, while also managing key relationships with vendors and other partners.

About Hoku Scientific, Inc.

Hoku Scientific (NASDAQ: HOKU) is a diversified clean energy technologies company with three business units: Hoku Materials, Hoku Solar and Hoku Fuel Cells. Hoku Materials plans to manufacture, market, and sell polysilicon for the solar market from its plant currently under construction in Pocatello, Idaho. Hoku Solar markets and installs turnkey photovoltaic systems in Hawaii. Hoku Fuel Cells has developed proprietary fuel cell membranes and membrane electrode assemblies for stationary and automotive proton exchange membrane fuel cells. For more information, visit

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve many risks and uncertainties. These statements relate to Hoku Scientific's ability to make its first commercial delivery of polysilicon in the first half of 2010; the timing and amount of revenues Hoku Scientific expects from sales of its future polysilicon output; Hoku Scientific's ability to increase sales of PV systems, Hoku Scientific's future financial performance; Hoku Scientific's business strategy and plans; and objectives of management for future operations. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as "anticipate," "believe," "can," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "potential," "predict," "project," "should," "will," "would" and similar expressions intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Hoku Scientific's actual results, performance, time frames or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, time frames or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Given these risks, uncertainties and other factors, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. In evaluating these statements, you should specifically consider the risks described in Hoku Scientific's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as required by law, Hoku Scientific assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.

Hoku, Hoku Solar, and the Hoku Scientific logo are trademarks of Hoku Scientific, Inc., and Hoku Materials is the trademark of Hoku Materials, Inc., all rights reserved.

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