Wade Barnes steps down as CEO of Farmers Edge

Wade Barnes, founder of Farmers Edge (supplied)

Farmers Edge co-founder Wade Barnes is stepping down as the digital agriculture company’s chief executive officer.

The change was announced by the company and its board of directors late Friday, March 26, coinciding with the release of the company’s fourth quarter financials.

Barnes — who has led Farmers Edge since starting the company in Pilot Mound, Man., in 2005 — will maintain his seat on the board of directors and will continue to work with the company on previously-announced strategic initiatives.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to lead this great company as CEO,” says Barnes, in a statement. “My journey with Farmers Edge has been a truly rewarding one. I’m incredibly proud to have worked with such talented, creative, and innovative team members over the years who have helped build Farmers Edge into what it is today. I am confident that the company will continue to grow, achieve important new milestones in its development, and deliver on my vision.”

The board says it has started its search for its next CEO.

Farmers Edge went public just over a year ago, with an initial offering worth $125 million on the TSX in February 2021. Share values have since dropped from over $18 to just under $3.

The company reported a net loss of $19.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2021, and a $66.4 million net loss for fiscal 2021. The number of acres enrolled in its digital agronomy program, meanwhile, rose from 14.8 million to 16.5 million over the course of 2021.

Farmers Edge also announced a new $75 million loan from its majority shareholder, Fairfax Financial Holdings, on Friday.

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