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UrtheCast replaces CEO amid financial strains

Wade Larson, who replaced brother Scott Larson as CEO in 2015, will now serve as a special adviser to the company's board of directors
Former CEO of UrtheCast, Wade Larson, with a satellite video shot from his company's cameras | Photo: Chung Chow

A Vancouver-based satellite imaging company known for partnering with the International Space Station on high-def cameras is shaking up its management team amid financial difficulties.

UrtheCast Corp. (TSX: UR) co-founder Wade Larson has left his position as both CEO and boardroom director, according to a March 9 announcement.

Board director Greg Nordal replaced Larson on March 8 and will serve as interim CEO as the company seeks a permanent leader.

The company’s third-quarter earnings revealed revenues in its Earth observation business had been impacted by delays in the award of a major contract.

Third-quarter revenue — the most recent financials to be released — amounted to $10.2 million, while the company recorded a net loss of $6.4 million.

Since then, the company says it’s been continuing to advance financing negotiations for a “selected institutional investor” to close financing for one of its projects, which requires US$195 million to fund.

The company said March 9 that a financing package it’s working on will cover US$185 million.

Nordal is the third person to lead UrtheCast since 2015, when Wade Larson replaced brother Scott Larson as CEO.

Wade Larson spent more than seven years at the Canadian Space Agency before he transitioned out of the public sector and began working in business development at Canadarm-maker MDA, which is now owned by San Francisco’s Maxar Technologies Ltd. (TSX: MAXR).

He will be sticking around in a reduced capacity, serving as special advisor to the board focused on the strategic business development UrtheCast's synthetic aperture radar technology.

"We are delighted to have someone of Greg's calibre and experience to lead the next stage in our development as a growing geospatial data and geoanalytics provider," UrtheCast chairman Tye Burt said in a statement.

Nordal previously served as CEO and president of Nelson Education Ltd. and CEO of The Dun & Bradstreet Corporation’s Canadian operations.

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