MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - July 12, 2016) - Tom Velan, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer ("CEO") of Velan Inc. (TSX:VLN) (the "Company"), announced his plan to retire from his CEO position, effective March 1st, 2017. On that date, Yves Leduc, who is currently the President of the Company, will become President and CEO. Tom Velan will continue to be the Chairman of the Board. Yves Leduc will become the first non-Velan family CEO in the history of the family-controlled valve company.
"Back in 2012, I advised the board that we should start thinking about a leadership transition plan," said Tom Velan. "The Board and I subsequently began working on a multi-facetted plan to prepare the Company for succession, including establishing a leadership and talent committee, revamping the executive incentive plan, and performing an executive search, which culminated in Yves Leduc being named President in January, 2015. When I retire as CEO in 2017, I will be 65 years old and will have worked for 44 years in the Company, the last 14 years as the leader. My work at Velan has been a very important part of my life and I will continue to be closely involved in the Company in the future, both at the Board level and in advising Yves and the executive team. Our family continues to own more than 70% of the shares and we have a deep commitment to the success of the Company."
Mr. Velan continued, "I have full confidence that Yves Leduc and the management team will provide the leadership and vision to build on our 66-year heritage and grow the Company into the future. In the short term, we face tough market challenges due to the downturn in energy markets but we have defined a path for growth and business improvement, and our goal is to be ready to benefit when the market recovers."
Yves Leduc said "Working alongside Tom and the whole Velan team has proven to be both dynamic and rewarding. I have deepened my knowledge of the valve industry, most notably during my trips with Tom to visit our suppliers, and plant locations around the world, as well as through my frequent interactions with our customers. Under Tom's direction, this Company has expanded its global presence and more than doubled in size and I will continue, of course, to benefit from his invaluable counsel. Today we have a strong balance sheet, a global footprint and supply chain, and a long-standing network of end-users and distributors spanning the globe. Above all, we have earned an unparalleled reputation for our products and technical knowhow in all of our markets. Over the course of my first year as President, our team has developed a strategic plan intending on fully leveraging those advantages to deliver ambitious goals. I am enthusiastic about the future of the Company."
Bill Sheffield, Lead Director and Chairman of the Corporate Governance and Human Resources Committee, stated "The Velans have built a great global business over the last 66 years. I am glad that Tom got us started on a leadership transition process early enough so that we could accomplish the succession plan in an orderly and professional way. It is a big change for this Company that has always had a Velan as leader to move to a non- Velan-family leader. Over the last year and a half, I have witnessed a very good working relationship between Tom and Yves with a lot of mutual respect and support and this bodes well for the future with Yves as CEO and Tom as Chairman of the Board."
Founded in Montreal in 1950, Velan Inc. (www.velan.com) is one of the world's leading manufacturers of industrial valves, with sales of US$426.9 million in its last reported fiscal year. The Company has manufacturing plants in 10 countries. Velan Inc. is a public company with its shares listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol VLN.
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