Toronto, Ontario – May 27, 2022 – Plant&Co. Brands Ltd. (CSE: VEGN) (FSE: VGP) (OTCQB: VGANF) (“PLANT&CO” or the “Company”), a modern health and wellness company curating delicious plant-based foods, is pleased to announce that Mr. Sean Black has joined Plant&Co’s executive team in a full-time capacity as Chief Investment Officer, overseeing brand acquisitions, real estate, and franchise development.
“Building upon our recent entry into the quick serve restaurant (QSR) space with the accretive transaction involving Heal Wellness, Plant&Co is preparing for its next wave of growth. Built upon that success we saw an opportunity to accelerate our M&A strategy within the overarching restaurant space.” said Shawn Moniz, CEO of Plant&Co Brands. “It was a perfect time to bring in yet another extremely talented individual to add to the bench strength of Plant&Co’s management team. Sean Black has an impressive 30+ years of successful restaurant entrepreneurship experience including brand franchising, real estate procurement, mergers and acquisitions, and restaurant business development models to name just a few. Mr. Black has developed brands from their conceptual stage to full maturity in the development cycle. In addition to Sean’s restaurant experience he also adds public markets experience to our team as we embark on important next steps in the growth of the company. The restaurant landscape is vast, and we believe the opportunity is significant to expand our presence. This is an early step in our acceleration plan to develop our platform for a stable of emerging brands in the public sector with the addition of Mr. Black. Further company updates to follow shortly.”
“I have really enjoyed watching the story start to unfold at Plant&Co since the new board of directors were assembled in summer of 2021. When Shawn offered me the opportunity to join the team and help take the company to the next level I was immediately interested.”, said Sean Black, Chief Investment Officer, Plant&Co Brands. “I look forward to bringing what I learned during my 30+ years in the restaurant industry where I have been very fortunate to be on both the buying & selling side of M&A transactions. The growth of the company is a part of the business that I really enjoy. My business partners and I at CraveIT Restaurant Group, Alex and Mark Rechichi (who joined the board of directors at Plant&Co in the summer of 2021) have shared a lot of success together over the years. I look forward to having fun in this next chapter of building a company together alongside them again, Shawn Moniz, and Kevin Cole.”
“During my time at MTY Food Group I learned a great deal working directly with Stanley Ma & Claude St-Pierre. I hope to leverage that knowledge and experience as Plant&Co looks to accelerate their organic & inorganic growth in the restaurant sector. Stanley started building MTY at $0.20 per share and with one deal at a time built a solid company that had its stock appreciate to over $70.00 per share. He inspires people like myself to go out and see if they can build something just like he did with a company based on good food and good people. I have had the opportunity to try the food & meet the founders of both recent accretive deals done at Plant&Co. They each impressed me and observing the culture being shaped here at this company is very exciting. I believe this company, and its team, are just getting started.”
Sean Black’s Background
Mr. Black is a co-founder in CraveIT Restaurant Group. In 2021 it sold its interest in both The Burger’s Priest (including its 25 franchised and corporately owned stores) and Fresh Plant Powered Restaurants to Recipe Unlimited (TSX:RECP), a publicly traded company on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
From 2013 to 2014, Mr. Black held the executive level position of Chief Development Officer at MTY Food Group (TSX:MTY), a publicly traded Canadian franchisor and operator of numerous casual dining, fast casual, and quick service restaurants operating under more than 70 brand names (such as Baton Rouge, Big Smoke Burger, Pink Berry, Ben&Florentine, Cultures, Extreme Pita, Jugo Juice, YUZU Sushi, Steak Frites, Madisons, Mr.Sub, Mucho Burrito, ManchuWok, South Street Burger, Timothys, Turtle Jacks, Cold Stone Creamery, and dozens more.)
This position came after Mr. Blacks successful sale to MTY when its subsidiary MTY Tiki Ming Enterprises Inc., struck an agreement to buy the assets of Extreme Brandz, owner of Extreme Pita, PurBlendz, and Mucho Burrito from the three co-founders, Alex Rechichi, Mark Rechichi and Sean Black. Extreme Brandz’s 40 U.S. stores became MTY’s first stores in the United States. Over 305 stores were acquired in the transaction.
Prior to that, Mr. Black held various positions within the Extreme Brandz from 2000 to 2013. Overseeing Real Estate and Franchise Development of the brand portfolio franchise system.
Plant&Co. Brands Ltd. (CSE: VEGN) (FSE: VGP) (OTCQB: VGANF) is a modern health and wellness company curating delicious plant-based foods. It offers a growing number of plant-based food products through its brand portfolio of Holy Crap Foods, YamChops ‘a plant-based butcher’, LumberHeads Food Co., and Heal Wellness. For more information please visit: www.HolyCrap.com, www.YamChops.com, www.LumberHeads.com, www.HealWellness.ca and www.PlantandCo.com.
Plant&Co. Brands Ltd.
Chief Executive Officer
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Neither the Canadian Securities Exchange nor the Market Regulator (as that term is defined in the policies of the Canadian Securities Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release, which has been prepared by management.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
All statements in this press release, other than statements of historical fact, are “forward-looking information” with respect to the Company within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Forward-looking information is frequently characterized by words such as “plan”, “expect”, “project”, “intend”, “believe”, “anticipate”, “estimate” and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions “may” or “will” occur, and include management’s expectations related to the accretive nature of the Acquisition as well as the future performance of the Company or of Heal Wellness, management’s anticipated growth of Heal Wellness through existing and new locations being established throughout 2022 and 2023, the successful sourcing of suitable new Heal Wellness locations by the Company, the success of the Company’s discussions with respect to the potential of expanding the Heal Wellness stores via corporate and franchise locations, and any announcements related thereto, the introduction of new Heal Wellness products, as well as the Company’s continuing search for accretive opportunities in 2022. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates at the date the statements are made and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements. There are uncertainties inherent in forward-looking information, including factors beyond the Company’s control. There are no assurances that the business plans for Plant&Co. described in this news release will come into effect on the terms or time frame described herein. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking information if circumstances or management’s estimates or opinions should change except as required by law. The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. For a description of the risks and uncertainties facing the Company and its business and affairs, readers should refer to the Company’s Management’s Discussion and Analysis and other disclosure filings with Canadian securities regulators, which are posted on www.sedar.com.