SAPPHIRE ENERGY ANNOUNCES CEO TRANSITION
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Cynthia “C.J.” Warner to Succeed Jason Pyle, Consolidating the Role of President and CEO
San Diego, CA (April 19, 2012)
– Sapphire Energy, Inc.
, one of the world leaders in algae-based green crude oil production, today announced Jason Pyle will step down as chief executive officer effective today. He will remain a member of the Sapphire Energy board of directors. Dr. Pyle, a respected bioengineer and entrepreneur, co-founded the company in 2007 and has been instrumental in building it into a leading force in algae-to-fuel production. Cynthia “C.J.” Warner, who has co-led the company since 2009 as president and chairman, has been named CEO, consolidating the leadership roles.
Dr. Pyle, a dedicated technologist with an M.D., Ph.D. from Stanford University, co-founded Sapphire Energy to change the world by producing a renewable crude oil from algae. His vision of “Green Crude” and “drop-in replacement fuels” have become two of the most central elements in the national pursuit of a global, sustainable alternative to crude oil imports. Dr. Pyle was a key leader at the company through its founding, technology development and unprecedented financings between 2007 and 2012, some of the most difficult and turbulent years in economic history. Today, the company is building its first active and on-schedule commercial demonstration project in Luna County, New Mexico. The Green Crude Farm, also known as the Integrated Algal BioRefinery (IABR), is the world's first commercial demonstration scale algae-to-energy facility, integrating the entire value chain of algae-based fuel, from cultivation, to production, to extraction of ready-to-refine Green Crude.
“Sapphire Energy has been a labor of love for me, and I’m extremely proud of the company we built, the technology we developed, and the capital we raised to make green crude production a reality. In just five years, we developed an entire industry. Now Sapphire has a world-class executive team, a leading technology platform, and is commissioning the world’s largest commercial demonstration facility to produce green crude for jet fuel and diesel. It’s a resounding success at every level,” said Dr. Pyle. “Now that we have recruited the most experienced Board of Directors, executive team and scientists of any company in the industry, I’ve decided that the time is right for me to move on to my next endeavor, which I will announce shortly. I have always believed that novel technology is the means by which we shall thrive and prosper in the world. I remain entirely inspired by Sapphire Energy’s mission, and I know that the company will continue to lead the algae-to-energy revolution. There are few things more important than supporting this nation’s transition to a more energy secure future.”
Prior to Sapphire Energy, Ms. Warner spent more than 27 years in energy, refining, and transportation. Most recently, she served as group vice president of global refining at British Petroleum. She is a current member of the National Petroleum Council, a federally chartered and privately funded advisory committee reporting to the United States Secretary of Energy. As CEO, Ms. Warner will expand the company’s partnerships, lead the company’s commercial demonstration, and continue the mission to bring Green Crude to a commercial reality.
“Everyone at Sapphire Energy has tremendous respect for Jason’s leadership, vision and entrepreneurship, and we have made significant accomplishments as a company during his tenure. We built the company from the ground up, creating a very strong foundation from which we can grow,” said Ms. Warner. “I look forward to continuing to build upon this solid framework and working with our best-in-class team of leaders, engineers, and scientists to optimize our company’s potential as we move into the next stages of bringing our Green Crude Farm on-line.”
About Sapphire Energy
San Diego-based Sapphire Energy is pioneering an entirely new industry – Green Crude – production with the potential to profoundly change America’s energy and petrochemical landscape for the better. Sapphire’s products and processes in this category differ significantly from other forms of biofuel because they are made solely from photosynthetic microorganisms (algae and cyanobacteria), using sunlight and CO2
as their feedstock; are not dependent on food crops or valuable farmland; do not use potable water; do not result in biodiesel or ethanol; enhance and replace petroleum-based products; are compatible with existing infrastructure; and are low carbon, renewable and scalable. Sapphire has an R&D facility in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and is currently building the first Integrated Algal BioRefinery in Columbus, New Mexico.
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