Turning Point Names New CEO, Outlook Rises

Turning Point Brands (NYSE: TPB) has appointed Yavor Efremov as President and Chief Executive Officer, effective January 11, 2022. Mr. Efremov succeeds the Company’s current CEO, Larry Wexler, who will retire in January following 18 highly successful years at TPB. Mr. Wexler will remain on the Board of Directors and serve as a consultant to the Company following his retirement.

Outlook Update

Turning Point also updated its guidance for 2021 revenue. The company said it now expects 2021 revenue and EBITDA to be near the higher end of the previous guidance, In October, Turning Point also revised its guidance downward from a range of $447 to $462 million to $433 to $443 million. At the time, the company cited the FDA regulatory environment along with the further implementation of the PACT Act. Turning Point also noted that to a lesser extent supply chain-related delays were pushing some sales of new products into the first quarter of 2022. The company also changed its forecast for its adjusted EBITDA to $104 to $108 million versus the previous guidance of $108 to $113 million.

“Yavor joined Turning Point’s Board of Directors in July 2021 to help develop our long-term strategic plan. Since then, he has spent extensive time working closely with teams in each area of the business,” said David Glazek, Chairman of Turning Point Brands. “Yavor came highly recommended by some of the most successful operators and investors in the world. The Board is confident he has the right skill-set to help grow the Company to the size and scale necessary to maximize value in a world driven by constantly shifting consumer preferences.”

Prior to joining Turning Point Brands, Mr. Efremov served as the CEO of Motorsport Network, where he was responsible for upgrading the IT infrastructure, processes, and company strategy to support the integration of more than 30 businesses around the world. He also served as a senior executive at Liberty Media Corp., where he was instrumental in sourcing, financing, and growing Liberty’s investments in multibillion-dollar businesses, including Charter Communications and Formula 1. Prior to that, Mr. Efremov worked as an investment banker at Goldman Sachs & Co. and as a corporate lawyer at the law firm of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. Mr. Efremov holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and a Ph.D. in economics from Yale University. He also has a B.S. in mathematics and a B.A. in economics from Furman University.

“It has been my sincere privilege to serve Turning Point Brands and its stakeholders during this period of significant growth as we increased EBITDA fivefold over the past 18 years,” said Mr. Wexler. “I want to thank both the Board for the opportunity to serve our shareholders, and my colleagues for their dedication, hard work and, most importantly, their resiliency during my tenure. Turning Point Brands is well-positioned with highly recognizable brands and a strong management team. I look forward to working with Yavor and the next generation of leaders to build upon the success we have achieved.”

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