Shares of Quebec-based Neptune Technologies (TSX:NTB) are racing today on two separate pieces of news.
The company announced that, effective immediately, CEO Henri Harland has resigned. The board says it will begin the search for a new boss, but in the meantime CFO Andre Godin will fill the role.
Harland presided over a Neptune that rose to prominence on the increasing popularity of krill oil as a nutritional supplement and fell when, on November 8, 2012 an explosion at its plant in Sherbrooke killed three people, injuring eighteen more and destroyed the company’s entire inventory. The company has since been mired in red ink and a class action lawsuit that was ultimately dismissed.
News with less gravitas from the coutroom came today in the form of a settlement between Neptune and Enzymotec Ltd. and Enzymotec USA Inc. The sides reached an agreement in the patent-claim that will result in Neptune granting Enzymotec a worldwide, non-exclusive royalty-bearing licence to market and sell its nutraceutical products.
“This is a significant victory and clear reflection of the strength, value and validity of our intellectual property and a validation of our IP procurement and enforcement strategy,” said Neptune’s chief global strategy officer, Dr. Tina Sampalis. “We will continue to expand our patent portfolio, thereby ensuring that we have long-lasting and comprehensive protection. We look forward to further solidifying the unique nature of our product offerings and our position as the pioneer in marine omega-3 phospholids.”
At press time, shares of Neptune Technologies on the TSX were up 10.9% to $2.75.