Elixinol restructures board ahead of international push

Elixinol restructures board ahead of international push

There's been a reshuffle at the top of Australia's largest cannabis company.

Elixinol Global (ASX: EXL) has announced changes to both its executive team and board ahead of a crucial period of expansion.

Stratos Karousos has taken the reigns as CEO, replacing co-founder Paul Benhaim (pictured) who will transition to the role of chief innovation officer.

Both Karousos and Benhaim will sit on the board as Elixinol focuses on expanding its Sydney-based global executive office and increasing its regional support.

Non-executive chairman Andrew Duff says the leadership changes and expansion is timely, given the company's fast-growing scale and status as the country's largest cannabis player.

"These group structure changes will better enable Elixinol Global to capitalise on the significant industry opportunity, and reflect Elixinol Global's continued and exciting growth," says Duff.

"The company is now of a scale that coordinated global resources are necessary to leverage insights and create efficiencies."

Elixinol Global was formed in January 2018 when Colorado-based Elixinol LLC joined forces with Hemp Foods Australia to form a new worldwide brand and launch an IPO.

Under the company structure, Hemp Foods Australia is the manufacturer and distributor of hemp food products and skin care, while Elixinol LLC is the bulk and retail provider of hemp-based cannabidiol (CBD) dietary supplements and topical products.

Although Benhaim is no longer at the helm as CEO, he is excited to move back into a hands-on role.

"I'm delighted the company is moving to its next phase of growth. My new role frees me up to focus on my passion for innovation and product development and the company will benefit from Stratos' commercial and business process focus," he says.

Following Elixinol's recent successful $50 million capital raising, Karousos says the company will continue to tackle the hemp-derived CBD market, particularly in the United States.

"Elixinol Global currently has a broad business, both geographically and by product line," he says.

"The plan is to critically review where we want to focus our efforts in the near-term and prioritise areas with the greatest potential.

"We believe the opportunity in the global CBD market, in particular the US, is substantial."
At the time of writing (10:24am AEST), EXL shares are trading at $4.10.

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