Light Science Technologies Holdings PLC - Light Science Technologies appoints Graham Cooley as chair as it eyes food security as key growth driver

Light Science Technologies Holdings PLC (AIM:LST) has appointed Dr Graham Cooley as its new non-executive chair, as the company eyes strategic growth a its key business vertical – controlled environment agriculture (CEA).

In today’s statement, the company described Cooley as “a proven deal maker with a particular expertise in product and market strategy”, it also noted that the former ITM power chief executive has raised over £600 million for British Cleantech SMEs.

The company also added Richard Mills to the board as an independent non-executive director. Mills is described as having experience expanding CEA businesses into new markets, and he presently managing director of Haygrove Limited’s Growing Systems Division, where he leads its polytunnel and growing systems.

LSTH also announced that, at the same time, Myles Halley and Robert Naylor are leaving their board roles.

The boardroom shuffles comes after September’s acquisition of Tomtech, a specialist in controlled environment agriculture (CEA) – a type of growing that includes indoor and vertical farming – which the company sees as a significant growth area.

With an emphasis on CEA, the company is now aiming to capture a more significant market share.

“I’m a huge believer in the Light Science vision and am delighted to be joining the team. I believe that the cost, carbon footprint and security of supply of food will be core global issues in coming years,” Cooley said in a statement.

“Light Science has developed the right products at the right time and is well positioned to take significant share of this huge market.

“I am also very impressed by the recent steps that management have taken to prioritise cash generation to set a strong foundation for the future.”

Chief executive, Simon Deacon, added: “The addition of Graham and Richard to the board significantly enhances our industry expertise, strengthening our credentials as changemakers.

“Their passion for our goals is evident, and we’re delighted to welcome them.

“Our CEA offerings are more diverse and mature and are now underpinned by the cash-generative CEM (contract electronics manufacturing) division and near-term cash-generative PFP (passive fire protection) division, building agility and robustness into the business model.

“With this board restructure, I have no doubt that the group is significantly better placed to execute its growth plans.”

Mills, meanwhile, said: “The Light Science proposition is clear and strong.

“There are several factors that, in the coming years, will force us to change the way we look at food production.

“Many parts of the earth are now facing food and water shortages, with increasingly more regions at near-term risk.

“Governments are now looking towards policies to encourage sustainable and efficient growing methods.

“Socially, scrutiny of the effect of food production on climate change has never been higher, and there is growing consensus on the need to transition away from reliance on processed foods.”

Light Science Technologies appoints Graham Cooley as chair as it eyes food security as key growth driver | AIM:LST (

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