ATCHISON, KAS. — Gary Gradinger, Timothy Newkirk and Karen Seaberg have been re-elected to the board of directors at MGP Ingredients, Inc.
Mr. Gradinger, chairman and chief executive officer of Golden Star, Inc., has been a director since June 2005. He is a member of the Audit Committee and of the Human Resources and Compensation Committee. Since 1983, he has been chairman and c.e.o. of Golden Star, Inc., a privately owned company engaged in the production of textile cleaning, communication and safety products.
Mr. Newkirk has been president and c.e.o. of MGPI since March 2008. He joined MGPI in 1991 and has been a plant manager, director of operations and chief operating officer. He left the company for a short period to become vice-president of global operations for Abengoa Bioenergy S.L. and c.o.o. of Abengoa Bioenergy Corp. before returning to MGPI in 2005.
Ms. Seaberg has been a director since August 2009. She has been an executive travel agent with the Atchison Travel Center for the past 20 years and is co-owner of a local Long John Silver's franchise in Atchison. She has been and remains highly active in civic affairs at the local and national levels. She is the daughter of Cloud L. Cray Jr., MGPI board member and former longtime executive officer of the company.
The terms of all three directors expire in 2014.
The appointments were made as part of MGPI’s annual shareholders meeting, during which time Mr. Newkirk also provided an overview of the past year’s results, including a number of milestones in the company’s drive to expand sales of specialty ingredients and distillery products sold into the consumer packaged goods market.
“While our profit performance in fiscal 2011 experienced a setback, due in large part to higher grain costs, our net sales for the year improved substantially over the prior fiscal year, up 23%, and was mainly driven by our distillery products segment,” Mr. Newkirk said. “We expect to see improved results in the new fiscal period as improved pricing takes effect, and production volumes at both our Atchison plant and at our ICP joint venture revert closer to their rated capacities.
“Our reputation for producing high quality alcohol is one of our most valuable assets. We are aggressively pursuing opportunities to produce and sell more gallons. As we achieve our targeted profit margins, this segment can be a great source of increasing cash flows.”
Mr. Newkirk said the transformation at MGPI “is a continuing process,” but added that the company is making significant headway.
“We remain focused on building scale by adding products, capabilities and capacity,” he said. “With a stronger supply chain and the use of outsourcing, we have greatly increased our market reach and flexibility in a capital efficient-manner.”