Willits is a 38-year veteran executive with Cargill and current Chairman of Cargill's Asia Pacific region
For Immediate Release
|Robert Blum, Joe Dorame, Joe Diaz
Lytham Partners, LLC
Chief Financial Officer
S&W Seed Company
SACRAMENTO, California – April 17, 2018
S&W Seed Company (Nasdaq: SANW), an innovative global agricultural company focused on alfalfa, sorghum, sunflower and stevia, today announced the nomination of 38-year Cargill executive Alan Willits to its Board of Directors.
Alan Willits is the chairman of Cargill Asia Pacific and leads Cargill’s Agriculture Supply Chain business in the Asia Pacificregion. Mr. Willits is responsible for several businesses within this group, including Cargill’s oil palm plantations, trading and merchandising in the Asia-Pacific region, and Cargill’s grains and oilseeds supply chain businesses in North Asia, South Asia and Australia.
Mr. Willits joined Cargill in 1980 as a merchant in its grain division. He has held numerous merchandising and management positions in Indiana, Missouri and Minnesota. In 1991, Mr. Willits went on to manage Cargill’s international wheat trading activities in Geneva, Switzerland and in 1995 he moved to Argentina to manage Cargill’s grain business. Mr. Willits moved back to the United States in 2000 to work for Cargill AgHorizons and went on to lead its specialty canola oils business.
In 2008, Willits was named president of Cargill Corn Milling North America, where he oversaw all aspects of the corn processing business until taking on the role as the leader of Cargill’s agriculture supply chain enterprise in the Asia Pacific region in June 2014. Mr. Willits holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Illinois, College of Agriculture.
Mark Wong, S&W’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are very pleased with the appointment of Alan Willits to S&W’s board of directors. Alan is a highly successful executive who has overseen critical operations for Cargill for nearly 40 years across North America, Asia Pacific, Europe and South America. Alan’s understanding of the agricultural supply chain and processing in key end markets should serve us exceptionally well as we look to advance our stevia commercialization program. We look forward to capitalizing on his years of experience and contacts within the industry to advance our goal of evolving S&W into a premier middle market agricultural company in the years to come.”
Mr. Willits commented, “I look forward to working with the team at S&W to drive advancements in their core crop portfolio as they look to become an increasingly diversified middle agricultural company in the years to come. In particular, I am excited to lend my experiences and relationships to the advancement of S&W’s stevia operations where I believe there will be significant growth in the years to come.”
About S&W Seed Company
Founded in 1980, S&W Seed Company is a global agricultural company headquartered in Sacramento, California. S&W’s vision is to be the world’s preferred proprietary seed Company which supplies a range of forage and specialty crop products that supports the growing global demand for animal proteins and healthier consumer diets. S&W is a global leader in alfalfa seed, with significant research and development, production and distribution capabilities. S&W’s capabilities span the world’s alfalfa seed production regions, with operations in the Western United States, including the San Joaquin and Imperial Valleys of California, Australia, and Canada, and S&W sells its seed products in more than 30 countries around the globe. S&W also provides hybrid sorghum and sunflower, and is utilizing its research and breeding expertise to develop and produce stevia, the all-natural, zero calorie sweetener for the food and beverage industry. For more information, please visit www.swseedco.com.
Safe Harbor Statement
This release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended and such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. “Forward-looking statements” describe future expectations, plans, results, or strategies and are generally preceded by words such as “may,” “future,” “plan” or “planned,” “will” or “should,” “expected,” “anticipates,” “draft,” “eventually” or “projected.” Forward-looking statements in this release include, but are not limited to, statements concerning the anticipated benefits of Mr. Willits’ strategic and operational experience, the advancement of S&W Seed Company’s strategic plans and anticipated growth in our stevia operations. You are cautioned that such statements are subject to a multitude of risks and uncertainties that could cause future circumstances, events, or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements, including the risks that actual results may differ materially from those projected. These and other risks are identified in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including without limitation our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, and in our other filings subsequently made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date on which they were made. We do not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of the receipt of new information, the occurrence of future events or otherwise.