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Cronos’ board gets an Altria makeover

The board and management of Cronos Group Inc. is getting an overhaul, the company announced Friday, following the closure of cigarette maker Altria Group, Inc.’s $2.4-billion investment in the cannabis company. Cronos’ board is expanding from five to seven members, with Altria nominating four of the members:

  • Kevin “K.C.” Crosthwaite: Altria’s Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy and Growth Officer.
  • Bronwen Evans: An independent consultant, who was CEO of the True Patriot Love Foundation, which supports Canadian military veterans, from 2012 to 2019.
  • Bruce Gates: Altria’s former Senior Vice President of External Affairs for Altria Client Services.
  • Murray Garnick: Altria’s General Counsel, who has “led the legal support for sales, marketing, regulation, and product development and intellectual property matters. He has also supervised the management of tobacco, health and all other litigations brought against Altria and its operating companies,” according to a Cronos news release.
  • In addition, Jerry Barbato, who was Altria’s Senior Director of Corporate Strategy, has joined Cronos’ management team as Chief Financial Officer, while former Cronos CFO William Hilson has been moved to the newly created role of Chief Commercial Officer.

Following the closure of the investment, Altria now effectively controls Cronos, owning 45 per cent of the Canadian cannabis company. Altria has additional warrants, which, if exercised, would give it a 55 per cent stake in Cronos.

–Mark Rendell

Supreme Cannabis gets new CFO

Nikhil Handa, former VP of Finance at online health and wellness retailer (which was acquired by McKesson Canada in 2017), has joined The Supreme Cannabis Company Inc. as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Handa replaces Dimitre Naoumov, who will become the Supreme’s VP, Finance. On Thursday, the company also appointed Kenneth R. McKinnon, a partner at Citrus Capital Partners Ltd., to its board.

Supreme has undergone several high-level management changes in recent months. In September, the company’s president Navdeep Dhaliwal became CEO, while former-CEO John Fowler became the company’s president.


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