Hans Kristian Mong steps down, Knut Nesse hired as AVKA Group chairman

Published on
August 16, 2019

Knut Nesse will replace Hans Kristian Mong as the chairman of the board of AKVA Group, after Mong decided to step down from the position after six years, the company announced on Friday, 16 August.

Nesse is the former CEO of Skretting and Nutreco, and is currently serving as the managing director of the Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship (SeaBOS). He left Nutreco in June 2018 after 23 years at the Netherlands-based company in order to return to his native Norway with his family, “having lived abroad for many years.”

“We are very pleased to welcome Knut as the new chairman for AKVA Group,” said Mong, who will continue to serve as a member of AKVA’s board. “Knut has extensive international experience from the global aquaculture sector and with a very good network. I’m very confident that he will add value and support the continuous growth of AKVA Group.”

As part of the agreement in taking over as chairman, AKVA Group has agreed to option 50,000 shares of the company at a price of NOK 75.60 (USD 8.50, EUR 7.67) per share. The option can be exercised between  1 April, 2022 and 31 August, 2022, on the condition Nesse remains a member of the board or employed at AKVA Group at that time. 

In a notice filed with the Oslo Stock Exchange, AKVA said it entered into the agreement despite the recommendation by Norway’s finance authorities that board members not be given share options.

“The board of AKVA group recognizes that the agreement is not in line with the recommendation in the Norwegian Code of Practice, which is also reflected in AKVA group’s statement of corporate governance, that board members should not be granted share options. However, the board believes that it would be in the best interest of the company and its shareholders to accept the non-compliance in order to secure the appointment of an experienced chairperson with long and broad industry knowledge and international experience,” it said.

Additionally, the company announced that Nesse’s private firm, Nesse and Co., has purchased 50,000 shares of company stock at the same price, NOK 75.60 per share. Prior to this acquisition, Nesse did not own any AKVA Group holdings.

“I have known Hans Kristian and AKVA Group for many years. I have the highest respect for his passion for the aquaculture and fishery sector and I’m truly impressed by the development of AKVA Group as a leading technology company,” Nesse said. “I look forward to continue working with Hans Kristian as a board colleague and main shareholder. I am excited by the growth possibilities for AKVA Group supported by a very innovative technology platform for sustainable aquaculture.”

Photo courtesy of AKVA Group

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