Enviva Inc. (NYSE: EVA) (“Enviva,” “our,” “we,” or the “Company”) today announced that Thomas Meth, Enviva’s President, has been appointed the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and will become a member of Enviva’s board of directors (the “Board”), while retaining his title as President.
The Company also announced that John Keppler, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, is expected to assume the role of Executive Chairman, consistent with the succession plan developed by the Board. Prior to doing so, Mr. Keppler will be stepping down from his responsibilities to pursue medical and surgical treatment to address a cardiac valve issue. The Company expects Mr. Keppler, who co-founded Enviva in 2004 with Mr. Meth, to remain available to the Company, and to return in the active Executive Chairman role early in 2023.
Additionally, the Company announced that Ralph Alexander, who has been a member of the Board since 2013, will fulfill Mr. Keppler’s duties as Chairman of the Board until Mr. Keppler’s return, when Mr. Alexander is expected to become Lead Independent Director.
“After careful consideration, I have decided with my medical team and family to step back and focus on my heart condition,” said Mr. Keppler. “The Board and I are delighted that Thomas Meth will serve as our next CEO. Thomas has been my closest business partner in building Enviva into the great company it is today, and I know he will continue to excel in leading Enviva’s growth trajectory as we execute our plan for the future. Thomas is an exceptionally skilled leader who has full command of all facets of the Company and has earned the respect of our employees, customers, investors, and other key stakeholders.”
“We have had the privilege of working with Thomas since Enviva’s earliest days and, during our succession planning process, the Board has had the opportunity to see firsthand Thomas’s substantial contributions to the Company and the leadership team. He is the right person to lead Enviva into the future,” said Ralph Alexander. “We are especially pleased that John is expected to continue as Executive Chairman when he completes what we expect to be a full recovery.”
“All of us at Enviva wish John the best as he prioritizes his health and full recovery, and we look forward to his return as Executive Chairman,” said Thomas Meth. “We are laser-focused on executing the previously announced business plan and are on track to deliver results for 2022 in line with the expectations we outlined recently on our third-quarter earnings call. The world wants cost-effective, ready-to-deploy bio-based alternatives to fossil fuels, from secure sources, and that’s exactly what we offer.”
Mr. Keppler concluded, “I am incredibly proud of the executive team we have built and the tremendous leadership they have demonstrated and continue to demonstrate, not only in building a remarkable business, but also in delivering exceptional shareholder value. Enviva is a company with a robust backlog of fully contracted long-term revenues, a strong growth profile with a large and growing high-quality customer base around the globe, and a durable and sustainable cash flow generation capability. I am confident this trajectory will continue under Thomas, as the team grows and scales Enviva’s manufacturing and customer footprint, and helps customers accelerate their transition from traditional fossil fuel feedstocks for power and heat generation and for hard-to-abate industries. Enviva has a tremendous team leading this company and I look forward to joining them for our investor day and launch of full-year 2023 guidance early in the new year.”
Brief Bio on Thomas Meth
Mr. Meth is a co-founder of Enviva and, prior to his appointment as CEO, he held the position of President, working closely with Mr. Keppler, with responsibility for the Company’s activities from the forest, through our operations and logistics, and ultimately to our customers’ discharge. Mr. Meth has led Enviva’s business development, sales and commercial customer relations, fiber procurement, and sustainability functions. In addition, he has had oversight over the broader plant and port operations and global public affairs initiatives. Mr. Meth holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration in Austria as well as an M.B.A. from The Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at The University of Virginia.
Enviva is the world’s largest producer of industrial wood pellets, a renewable and sustainable energy source produced by aggregating a natural resource, wood fiber, and processing it into a transportable form, wood pellets. Enviva owns and operates ten plants with a combined production capacity of approximately 6.2 million metric tons per year in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and Mississippi, and is constructing its 11th plant in Epes, Alabama. Enviva sells most of its wood pellets through long-term, take-or-pay off-take contracts with creditworthy customers in the United Kingdom, the European Union, and Japan, helping to accelerate the energy transition and to decarbonize hard-to-abate sectors like steel, cement, lime, chemicals, and aviation fuels. Enviva exports its wood pellets to global markets through its deep-water marine terminals at the Port of Chesapeake, Virginia, the Port of Wilmington, North Carolina, and the Port of Pascagoula, Mississippi, and from third-party deep-water marine terminals in Savannah, Georgia, Mobile, Alabama, and Panama City, Florida.
Cautionary Note Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
The information included herein and in any oral statements made in connection herewith include “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. All statements, other than statements of present or historical fact included herein, regarding Enviva’s strategy, future operations, financial position, estimated revenues and losses, projected costs, prospects, plans, and objectives of management are forward-looking statements. When used herein, including any oral statements made in connection herewith, the words “could,” “should,” “will,” “may,” “believe,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” the negative of such terms, and other similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain such identifying words. These forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations and assumptions about future events and are based on currently available information as to the outcome and timing of future events. Except as otherwise required by applicable law, Enviva disclaims any duty to revise or update any forward-looking statements, all of which are expressly qualified by the statements in this section, to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof. Enviva cautions you that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, most of which are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond the control of Enviva. These risks include, but are not limited to: adverse changes to Mr. Keppler’s health; changes in leadership plans and strategies; overall domestic and global political and economic conditions; and other factors, as described in Enviva’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), including the detailed factors discussed under the heading “Risk Factors” in Enviva’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021, as supplemented in the Company’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarters ended March 31, June 30, and September 30, 2022.
Should one or more of the risks or uncertainties described herein and in any oral statements made in connection therewith occur, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results and plans could different materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements. Additional information concerning these and other factors that may impact Enviva’s expectations and projections can be found in Enviva’s periodic filings with the SEC. Enviva’s SEC filings are available publicly on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov.
To learn more about Enviva please visit our website at www.envivabiomass.com. Follow Enviva on social media @Enviva.
Vice President, Investor Relations