Wide Open Agriculture (WOA) has signed a binding MoU to sell its Dirty Clean Food brand to the Australian agri-food major’s CEO, Jay Albany.

The brand is to be sold for A$1.5m (US$990,000), an ASX filing released yesterday by WOA indicates (11 March).

Both parties signed the agreement on 8 March.

Dirty Clean Food, alongside “all assets” belonging to the brand, will be bought by Albany’s holding company, DCF Global Pty.

As a result of the sale, Albany is to step down as CEO at WOA immediately. He had been in the position since December 2022.

Matthew Skinner, former CFO at the company will become interim CEO.

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Finalising the deal will require approval from all of WOA’s shareholders, the filing said. Its completion is also dependent on Albany “securing working capital finance for DCF”.

WOA’s decision to sell the brand comes as it looks to commercialise its Buntine Protein ingredient made from the lupin bean grown locally in Western Australia.

The decision is also expected to “lower cash burn, enhance sales focus, accelerate potential future profitability, and streamline operations”, according to the filing.

The disposal of Dirty Clean Food is expected to hit the company’s “immediate short-term revenue stream”, it said.

The brand made up A$11.5m of the group’s total revenue in the year ended 30 June 2023.

Based in Kewdale, Western Australia, Dirty Clean Food is an online retail brand that sells a range of locally and ethically produced food and drink products. These include fresh meats, seafood, fruits and vegetables, dairy and eggs, baked goods, ready meals, and drinks like kombucha, flavoured sodas and RTD coffees, among other products.

The company sells products direct-to-consumer online, as well as to wholesalers, foodservice and retailers in Western Australia.

WOA said it believed the effect on revenue would eventually “be remedied by the commercialisation of Buntine Protein and the refocusing of its resources and capital into the production of plant-based proteins.”

WOA first signalled its intention to sell the brand last month.

Commenting on the news, WOA chair, Anthony Maslin, said in a statement: “After an extensive period engaging with potential buyers, it became clear that Jay is the right person to take DCF into the next chapter.

“His passion for the business is unparalleled and his experience in delivering in this area is proven both in DCF but also previously in New York City with Max Delivery.

“We also believe he is the right person to take DCF into profitability, which in turn will continue the development and promotion of regenerative agriculture in Western Australia.”

Albany also added: “I’m very appreciative to WOA’s board of directors for the opportunity to lead the company over the last 15 months. I’m proud of the progress made in our lupin business to advance a capex light pathway to commercialisation, while building an elite global network of prospects and partners.

“WOA is in great hands with CEO Matthew Skinner and COO Miranda Stamps leading the commercial path forward for our ground-breaking lupin protein program.”