CEO Lance Hewitt to Assume Role as Chairman of the Board of Directors
SALINAS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 3, 2002--Monterey Pasta Company (Nasdaq:PSTA) announced that James M. Williams will join Monterey Pasta as President effective October 1, 2002. Williams brings many years of experience in the specialty refrigerated food industry, including the last 12 years as President and CEO of Bongrain Cheese-USA, a highly successful division of Bongrain SA. Some of the brands of upscale cheese products marketed by Bongrain include Alouette, Chavrie, Saladena and Delice de France. Previously, he held executive positions at the Hillshire Farms Division of Sara Lee Corporation where he was deeply involved in developing Deli-Select, a brand which helped take the deli meat category to a new level.
Monterey Pasta Company CEO Lance Hewitt commented, "Jim Williams is a customer-oriented executive with a solid background in marketing to club stores, such as Costco and Sam's Club, as well as Wal-Mart Supercenters, and the major retail grocery channels that make up Monterey Pasta's current customer roster. He has played key management roles in creating marketing structures, building effective sales organizations, and introducing new, innovative, upscale, high-quality refrigerated products. He has also managed multiple manufacturing plants to successfully produce upscale, high-quality products profitably. Jim is a highly effective team leader in growing small and large companies, making him the ideal match for Monterey Pasta." Hewitt added, "Jim received my full support and the support of our entire Board of Directors after an extensive nation-wide search for this key position."
With Williams on board as company president, Hewitt will retain the position of CEO for a time, ensuring a smooth leadership transition. Hewitt plans to assume the new position of Chairman of the Board of Directors sometime in 2003, primarily involved with strategic issues.
Founded as a regional brand, Monterey Pasta now has national distribution in over 7,700 retail and club stores throughout the United States and selected regions of Canada. Monterey Pasta manufactures USDA inspected, fresh gourmet refrigerated food products at its integrated 130,000 square foot corporate headquarters, distribution, and manufacturing facilities in Salinas, (Monterey County) CA.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve a number of uncertainties and risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements. Risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements, include risks associated with timely and cost-effective introduction of new products in the coming months, risks associated with accomplishing the anticipated results of the current plant expansion program, risks associated with the timely and effective assimilation of the Emerald Valley Kitchen business, retention of key personnel and retention of key management, the risks inherent in food production, and intense competition in the market in which the Company competes. Future projections are based on the assumption that we will continue to sell in existing retail and club stores and will continue to add new stores. For additional information regarding these and other risks, please read the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K, for the year ended December 30, 2001, its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the First and Second Quarters of 2002, and its 2001 Proxy Statement.