Becker to become GPRE CEO

By Bryan Sims | January 03, 2009
Web exclusive posted Dec. 29, 2008, at 11:48 a.m. CST

Omaha, Neb.-based ethanol producer and marketer Green Plains Renewable Energy Inc. has appointed Todd Becker as its new chief executive officer, effective Jan. 1.

Wayne Hoovestol, current chairman and chief executive officer of GPRE, will remain as the company's chairman until Becker's appointment takes effect in January.

Becker joined GPRE as president and chief operating officer following the completion of the company's merger with Delaware-based VBV LLC in mid-October. Previously, Becker served as VBV's chief executive officer and as executive vice president of sales and trading of global ethanol. Becker has more than 20 years of executive experience in agribusiness and renewable energy. He spent 10 years with ConAgra Foods in various management positions, including vice president of international marketing for ConAgra Trade Group and president of ConAgra Grain Canada.

Prior to its merger with GPRE, VBV was originally called Virgin Bioverda, a joint venture between Virgin Group, Wilon Holdings SA and Ireland-based NTR PLC. It owned two operating ethanol plants: Indiana Bio-Energy LLC, a 101 MMgy plant in Bluffton, Ind.; and Ethanol Grain Processors LLC, a 100 MMgy facility in Obion, Tenn.

Collectively, under GPRE's ownership, the company currently has four ethanol plants and eight grain elevators, with a combined operating capacity of 330 MMgy and grain storage capacity of 22 million bushels.

VBV has also announced plans to develop an ethanol blending and distribution business.

To learn more about GPRE, visit www.gpreinc.com/.