BEVERLY, Mass., May 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- LexaGene Holdings, Inc., (TSX-V: LXG; OTCQB: LXXGF) (the “Company”), a molecular diagnostics company that develops fully automated rapid pathogen detection systems, is pleased to announce the hiring of four additional sales representatives, including three for the veterinary market and one for the contract drug manufacturing market.
Dr. Jack Regan, LexaGene’s CEO and Founder states, “We are excited to have recruited very talented and experienced sales representatives from some of the biggest names in veterinary healthcare. Our new sales representatives have universally expressed optimism about selling LexaGene’s technology into veterinary hospitals, and the same is true for our sales representative targeting contract drug manufacturing organizations. Our rapidly growing sales team is now undergoing LexaGene specific training and will soon be offering incentives for early adopters so we can quickly expand our installation base.”
Dr. Regan continues, “We are focusing on the veterinary market as we see it as a largely untapped market. There are 77M dogs and 58M cats in the United States,1 and many pet owners spare no expense on caring for their animal companions. The overall size of the veterinary diagnostics market is expected to soon reach $4B and is growing at a compound annual growth rate “CAGR” of 8.8%.2 Currently, there are 18,600 private practice veterinary clinics that see enough animals per day to be target customers for LexaGene.3,4”
Feedback from key opinion leaders has boosted the Company’s confidence that the MiQLab™ system will become a powerful tool for veterinarians interested in rapid in-clinic diagnostics to improve patient care. The MiQLab represents a change in business model for veterinarians who currently rely on reference laboratories for infectious disease testing. Instead of shipping samples out and waiting days for results, the MiQLab generates results, inside the clinic, soon after the patient sample has been collected. This drastic improvement in time-to-result, particularly when antibiotic resistant superbugs are detected, is expected to improve prescription practices and lead to better patient outcomes.
Jeff Mitchell, LexaGene’s CFO, adds, “We are anticipating strong demand in veterinary diagnostics and have strategically hired additional sales managers to more effectively cover the United States. Although new technology adoption does take time, we are very optimistic that a significant percentage of the targeted practices will soon become LexaGene customers. While searching for additional sales managers, we were excited and gratified to see the amount of interest from many seasoned sales professionals working for the largest animal health companies in the United States.”
From a very talented pool of candidates, the Company has hired the following sales managers for veterinary diagnostics sales and open-access sales:
Julie Griggs is LexaGene’s West Regional Sales Manager. She has 18 years of experience in companion animal health and comes to LexaGene from Antech Diagnostics. Previously, she worked for Covetrus, Zoetis, Banfield, Village Animal Clinic, and Sunburst Animal Clinic. Julie is a Certified Veterinary Technician.
Kara Alkire is LexaGene’s Southeast Regional Sales Manager. She has 15 years of sales experience in companion animal health and comes to LexaGene from Bayer Animal Health / Elanco. Previously, she worked at Heska selling companion animal health products. Kara has a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a Minor in Chemistry from the College of Charleston, SC.
Whitney Fernandes is LexaGene’s Northeast Regional Sales Manager. She has 8 years of sales experience in companion animal health and equine. She comes to LexaGene from American Regent Animal Health and previously worked at Smartpak Equine. Whitney is a certified pharmacy technician and has a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from the University of Massachusetts.
Chris Bartlett is LexaGene’s Open-Access Sales Manager. He has 20 years of experience specializing in the sale of capital equipment technologies for laboratory, diagnostic, and single use bioprocessing applications. Chris comes to LexaGene from Refine Technology and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology from North Carolina State University.
These highly talented sales managers join Sarah Mumbower, LexaGene’s Midwest Regional Sales Manager. Sarah has 5 years’ experience in companion animal health and came to LexaGene in 2020 from IDEXX. She is a Certified Veterinary Technician.
In addition, LexaGene is announcing that on May 11, 2021, the board of directors approved inducement grants in accordance with the Company’s Omnibus Incentive Plan (the “Plan”) for independent, non-executive directors totaling 396,000 restricted share units (“RSUs”) and 396,000 share options (“Options”). The sum covers an initial grant for LexaGene’s newest board member who joined in February, as well as annual grants for the other three independent non-executive directors.
Each Option is exercisable into one common share of the Company (“Share”) at a price of CAD$0.66 per Share, for a period of ten years from the date of grant. The CAD$0.66 per share was 120% above the close price of the Company’s stock on the TSX Venture Exchange on May 10, 2021. The Options vest 10% on the grant date, and 15% every six months thereafter with an expiry date of May 11, 2031.
The RSUs start vesting on May 11, 2023, in equal 10% increments on the 11th day of each month thereafter expiring on February 11, 2024.
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On Behalf of the Board of Directors
Dr. Jack Regan
Chief Executive Officer & Chairman
About LexaGene Holdings Inc.
LexaGene is a molecular diagnostics company that develops molecular diagnostic systems for pathogen detection and genetic testing for other molecular markers for on-site rapid testing in veterinary diagnostics, food safety and for use in open-access markets such as clinical research, agricultural testing and biodefense. End-users simply need to collect a sample, load it onto the instrument with a sample preparation cartridge, enter sample ID and press ‘go’. The MiQLab™ system delivers excellent sensitivity, specificity, and breadth of detection and can return results in approximately two hours. The unique open-access feature is designed for custom testing so that end-users can load their own real-time PCR assays onto the instrument to target any genetic target of interest.
The TSX Venture Exchange Inc. has in no way passed upon the merits of the proposed transaction and has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release. Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
This news release contains forward-looking information, which involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual events to differ materially from current expectation. Important factors -- including the availability of funds, the results of financing efforts, the success of technology development efforts, the cost to procure critical parts, performance of the instrument, market acceptance of the technology, regulatory acceptance, and licensing issues -- that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's expectations as disclosed in the Company's documents filed from time to time on SEDAR (see www.sedar.com). Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. The company disclaims any intention or obligation, except to the extent required by law, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
3 U.S. Department of Labor, Census Bureau 2018