- Company announces rebranding campaign -
CHANTILLY, VA, June 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Catch the Wind Ltd. TSX-V: CTW, providers of Optical Control Systems (OCS), announced today that the board of directors have appointed Jo S. Major,
Ph.D., as Chief Executive Officer and have launched a rebranding
program to reflect current corporate goals.
President and Chief Executive Officer
The board of directors appointed current interim President and CEO Dr.
Major as full-time President and CEO effective immediately.
"Since Jo has taken over the leadership of Catch the Wind, the Company
has significantly reduced its operating expenses, established
legitimate third party manufacturing, enhanced the operational
efficiency and technological capabilities of the OCS, improved vital
data collection and improved customer relationships," said David
Garman, Director and Chairman of the Governance and Compensation
Committee of Catch the Wind. "We are pleased that Jo has agreed to
continue to lead the Company, as he has clearly demonstrated his
leadership qualities over the past 10 months."
"I'm very grateful that Hunter Hall introduced me to Catch the Wind in
the spring of 2011," said Dr. Major. "The Company has shown fundamental
strength, establishing technical independence and is doing a great job
building relationships with customers based upon transparency and
execution. The market opportunity is truly compelling and the entire
team is energized to transform the potential into a large, thriving and
profitable business. This is a unique chance to grow a business that
can, in such a substantial way, play a significant role in improving
the performance of the wind industry, a primary source of renewable
Dr. Major attended the University of Illinois at Urbana, where he earned
his B.S. M.S. and Ph.D., as an Intel Fellow, in Electrical
Engineering. Upon graduation, he joined Spectra Diode Labs, (SDL), a
Silicon Valley start-up specializing in high-power semiconductor
lasers. His work in the research group produced a number of patents
and commercial products, including the first commercially viable pump
lasers for optical telecom systems. Dr. Major had a variety of roles
within SDL, ultimately running the business unit responsible for
telecommunications products. Based largely upon the explosive growth
of the products of his business unit, SDL was sold to JDS Uniphase in
Within JDSU, he restructured the global optical components group and
returned them to healthy growth and financial performance. This work,
which took him throughout North America, Europe and Asia, eventually
led him to the CEO position at Avanex, a Nasdaq telecommunications
equipment supplier in deep financial difficulties. Over the four years
that he was at the helm of Avanex, it became the most profitable
company in its class earning the Deloitte and Touche "Fast 500" awards
in 2004 and 2007, and the "Technology Fast 50" award in 2007.
Dr. Major co-founded InSite Partners in 2008 with a strong desire to
support and grow technology businesses. Of particular interest are
companies that seek to improve the human condition, including renewable
energy and communication systems. Dr. Major also serves as a Director
for Source Photonics, a Francisco Partners company in which InSite
Partners is a minority equity owner.
The appointment of Dr. Major was part of a larger agreement with InSite
Partners, LLC. Within this agreement, Major will serve as President
and CEO with other members of the InSite team serving in a variety of
Based in the heart of Silicon Valley, InSite Partners specializes in
hands-on corporate turnarounds and strategic transactions of technology
companies. The InSite team has deep domain experience in the Telecom,
Millimeter-Wave, RF, Mixed-Signal, Solar, and Wind markets. The InSite
team has successfully unlocked shareholder value in technology firms
from start-ups to public companies with over $1B per year in revenue.
Founded in 2008, the firm is known for its distinctive technical
heritage, hands-on approach and relentless focus on execution and
Marla Sanchez, CFO and General Partner for InSite, commented, "Our prior
experience in optical systems and the wind market showed us that an
exciting potential market existed. The work over the last ten months
has allowed us to understand the team, technology and customer base.
Our conviction is that this is the right place to build value." Sanchez
continued, "The agreement has been structured to provide CTW with
seasoned executive talent while recognizing the limitations that early
stage companies have for cash payments, and to align InSite with the
investors in the Company, where InSite only achieves significant
financial gain in the case of overall corporate success as measured by
share price and corporate value."
The agreement includes cash compensation and warrants. In addition,
InSite has obligations to invest into CTW on terms equal to other
investors on any near-term capital raise. Finally, the agreement
provides InSite with rights to invest at terms equal to other investors
in CTW for the next three years.
The cash compensation is approximately $1,100,000 over the first year.
All cash compensation is deferred for the short term, with regular
monthly payments only beginning at the earlier of six months or a
After reaching that milestone, the cash compensation is broken equally
into two parts. The first part is simply paid monthly. The second
part accrues and is deferred for as long as three years with that
portion of the cash compensation increasing or decreasing relative to
corporate value, with InSite assuming downside risk in the case that
the corporate value decreases.
InSite will be granted warrants to purchase up to 4,000,000 common
shares of the Company, exercisable for a period of 3 years following
the issuance date at an exercise price equal to the closing market
price of the Company's common shares on the trading day immediately
prior to the issuance date. The warrants will vest in equal monthly
tranches, and all unvested portions of the warrant will be cancelled if
the Company's terminates the InSite Agreement. The issuance of the
warrants is subject to receipt of the approval of the TSX Venture
Details of the InSite agreement will be available at www.sedar.com.
Re-branding of Name and Products
Catch the Wind also announced today that it will be rebranding its name
and company products in order to reflect the current corporate culture
and high standard of quality of its current and future product mix.
"We have made many changes as to how we operate and to the performance
of the products we offer the wind industry," said Dr. Major. "We
believe in transparency with our investors and customers; we have an
obsession to understand and meet the needs of our customers and believe
in a concentrated focus on operational execution as the primary tool to
provide long-term gain to our investors and customers. We will build a
corporate brand, and corporate symbols, to convey these goals."
On a somewhat related note, CTW has also received notice from Optical
Air Data Systems LLC ("OADS") that OADS is purporting to terminate the
Licensing Agreement with CTW. The Company no longer considers the
Licensing Agreement to be material to its operations, due to the fact
that loss of the Licensing Agreement would be limited to the loss of
use of the trademarks licensed to CTW, and those trademarks are being
abandoned within the rebranding program.
About Catch the Wind Ltd.
Catch the Wind Ltd. is a high-growth technology company headquartered in
Chantilly, Virginia. The company was founded in 2008 to develop and
manufacture the OCS.
The OCS is a "next generation" wind turbine control system for
utility-scale wind turbines. From its position on top of the nacelle,
the OCS simultaneously measures wind speed and direction in the free
stream inflow ahead of the turbine and uses this information to
optimize wind turbine performance, increasing energy output and
reducing damaging stress loads.
Catch the Wind is focused upon the optical wind sensor systems, and
using the data produced by these sensors to enable highly efficient
control systems. The Company is focused on becoming a major contributor
in making clean, renewable wind energy more affordable and profitable.
For more information, please visit www.catchthewindinc.com.
This news release includes certain forward-looking statements within the
meaning of Canadian securities laws. Forward-looking statements involve
risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results,
performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from
those expressed in such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking
statements in this news release, include, but are not limited to,
economic performance and future plans and objectives of Catch the Wind.
Any number of important factors could cause actual results to differ
materially from these forward-looking statements as well as future
results. Although Catch the Wind believes that the assumptions and
factors used in making the forward-looking statements are reasonable,
undue reliance should not be placed on these statements, which only
apply as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be
given that such events will occur in the disclosed timeframes or at
all. Catch the Wind disclaims any intention or obligation to update or
revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise.
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as
that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange)
accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
SOURCE Catch the Wind Ltd.
For further information:
Catch the Wind Ltd.
Vice President and General Counsel
416-815-0700 ext. 253