As Braidy Industries enters its final fundraising stage of its $1.7 billion aluminum rolling mill in Greenup, Ky., the company announced in a press release Thursday that Chairman and CEO Craig Bouchard had stepped down from his current position.
The next day, Bouchard said in a Facebook post: “I did not authorize the press release that was issued yesterday. I have not stepped down as the CEO of Braidy Industries, and I am the Chairman of the Board and CEO of Braidy Atlas.”
On Saturday, Bouchard posted this on his Facebook page:
I believe the sudden and unexplained action taken by the Board of Directors of Braidy Industries to attempt to remove me as CEO is without basis and, if allowed to stand, threatens significant damage to Braidy Industries, its stockholders and the Ashland community. I have certain contractual rights as a major stockholder of Braidy Industries, and I am evaluating my options in light of them.
The genesis of the disagreement is my pursuit of foreign strategic partners representing patient capital that will stay with us for generations. Some of the directors want a focus on finding American private equity investment. These PE investors desire a 200% return and a sale in 3-5 years. They don’t like greenfield projects and don’t particularly care about Appalachia.
Patient capital is what we need. I disagreed with the board. Please don’t let it stress you.
We don’t need more coal miner, AK Steel or hospital layoffs in Ashland. I won’t compromise.
The American private equity community should be ashamed of itself for not supporting ordinary people creating good businesses.
We can do fine without them.