Former Nutreco CEO Knut Nesse appointed as new Chairperson of AKVA group

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Hans Kristian Mong has decided to step down as Chairperson of the board of AKVA group, after leading the board for more than six years. Mong will continue as a board member of AKVA group.

Knut Nesse is appointed as the new Chairperson as of today. Knut Nesse has been a member of the board of AKVA group since May and has broad international experience from management roles within the seafood business. He served six years as CEO of Skretting (2006-2012) and more recently, six years as CEO of Nutreco (2012-2018).

“We are very pleased to welcome Nesse as the new Chairperson for AKVA group. Nesse has extensive international experience from the global aquaculture sector and with a very good network. I’m very confident that he will add value and support the continuous growth of AKVA Group,” says Hans Kristian Mong.

“I have known Mong and AKVA group for many years. I have the highest respect for his passion for the aquaculture and fishery sector and I’m truly impressed by the development of AKVA group as a leading technology company. I look forward to continuing working with Hans Kristian as a board colleague and main shareholder. I am excited by the growth possibilities for AKVA group supported by a very innovative technology platform for sustainable aquaculture,” says Knut Nesse.

Shares
Nesse & CO, a company controlled by Knut Nesse, friday also acquired 50,000 shares from AKVA group (treasury shares) at a price of NOK 75.60 per share. Knut Nesse/Nesse & CO owned nil shares in AKVA group prior to the acquisition.

Further, AKVA group and Knut Nesse have entered into an option agreement which gives Knut Nesse the right to acquire further 50,000 shares at the same price. The option agreement is subject to the general meeting’s approval. The options can be exercised in the period from April 1. 2022, to August 31. 2022, conditional on Nesse still being a member of the board or employed in AKVA group or in one of its subsidiaries.

Not in line with the recommendation
The options can also be exercised prior to the said period if a takeover offer is made and completed, resulting in a change of control in the company. The company can settle the options by issuing new shares, deliver own shares (treasury shares ) or paying cash compensation equal to the difference between the strike price and the market price for the company’s shares at the time of exercise.

The board of AKVA group recognizes that the agreement is not in line with the recommendation in the Norwegian Code of Practice, which is also reflected in AKVA group’s statement of Corporate Governance, that board members should not be granted share options. However, the board believes that it would be in the best interest of the company and its shareholders to accept the non-compliance in order to secure the appointment of an experienced chairperson with long and broad industry knowledge and international experience.