• April 17, 2024

Hopkins Promoted to CEO, President of Kaival

 Hopkins Promoted to CEO, President of Kaival
Photo: Gajus

A former Altria executive has been promoted to CEO and resident of Kaival Brands Innovations Group, Inc. The company announced that it has expanded the role of Executive Chairman Barry Hopkins to include the additional positions.

Former CEO and president, Eric Mosser, has been appointed CEO and president of Kaival Brands International, a Kaival Brands Innovations Group’s subsidiary with an international licensing relationship with Philip Morris Products.

Niraj Patel, founder and chief science officer of Kaival Brands, said that from the beginning he has envisioned a diverse platform that could “capture the tailwinds” generated by the company’s core offering, the BIDI Stick electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) product.

“Barry understands this vision, the importance of regulatory compliance and youth access prevention, and has done an exceptional job since joining Kaival Brands. He has eagerly taken on increasing levels of responsibility, leveraging his decades of experience in management in our industry,” said Patel in a press release. “His appointment as Interim CEO and president was a natural progression, and we look forward to potentially expanding our excellent management team further during 2024 with a permanent CEO and/or president as our needs dictate.

“Having Barry in this position now is particularly important since we are at a significant inflection point, as we remain hopeful that FDA will soon complete its review of the pending premarket tobacco product application (PMTA) for the tobacco-flavored BIDI Stick Classic. If we receive a marketing granted order for this product, we will have significant momentum in the new year with the ability to continue to transition adult cigarette smokers, drive revenue and grow our company.”

According to a recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration announcement, the agency’s next status report regarding its review of the still-pending PMTAs for major brands and market share leading ENDS products is due to be filed by January 22, 2024 with the U.S. District Court in Maryland.

Although FDA has not indicated publicly which PMTAs it is prioritizing for review, Kaival Brands is hopeful that the BIDI Stick Classic will be included in the January status report. The company also anticipates the PMTAs for the other 10 BIDI-branded SKUs will remain in scientific review, according to Patel.

Recently, the Kaival Brands has been encouraged by the coordinated efforts of the FDA, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and other government agencies to increase their coordinated focus on enforcement. The company believes it has been hurt by illicit vaping products flooding the market, and it is now preparing to scale along with other legal products, assuming increased enforcement continues alongside the January announcement by the FDA.

“Hopkins will spearhead the company under the direction of the Board of Directors with a continued focus on accelerating revenue growth, improving operational efficiencies and executing Kaival Brands’ strategic growth and diversification initiatives, while remaining in compliance with applicable state and federal regulations.

“The company, alongside BIDI Vapor (the maker of the BIDI Stick), is also continuing to focus on working with Philip Morris to accelerate the international distribution of ENDS products using BIDI technology (which Philip Morris markets under the brand name ‘VEEV Now’), as part of Philip Morris’s plan to deliver a smoke-free future.”