By The Business Journal of Milwaukee

Virent Energy Systems Inc., a Madison company working to produce sustainable "biogasoline" from plant sugars, has named a former Lands' End Inc. executive as chief financial officer and added a Shell Oil Co. executive to its board of directors.

Susan Healy, most recently senior vice president and CFO at Dodgeville direct merchant Lands' End, will be responsible for the company's financial, accounting, and information technology operations. Healy will report to Lee Edwards, Virent president and CEO.

Joining Virent's board is David Jacober, who is the business opportunity manager-Americas team leader at Shell Downstream Inc. At Shell, he leads the development and implementation of large, strategic capital projects for process safety, growth and energy conservation across Shell's global "downstream manufacturing" assets. Jacober has more than 30 years of refining experience with Shell Oil Co.

Virent is working with Shell and Cargill Inc. on Virent's BioForming process, which converts plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules like those produced at a petroleum refinery. Shell recently acquired an undisclosed equity stake in Virent as part of a $46.4 million financing round and gained a seat on Virent's board as part of the financing agreement.

Virent began producing biogasoline in March at a demonstration plant in Virent's facility in Madison. The latest round of financing will be used to scale the process to commercial production volumes.

Copyright 2010 American City Business Journals
Copyright 2010