Crimson Wine Group’s CEO Erle Martin Is Suddenly Out And No Details Provided

Crimson Wine Group (CWGL) dropped a 134 word bomb today with the news that as of November 3rd, CEO Erle Martin was ‘no longer an employee’ of the company. The company slipped the news in a brief 8K filed with the SEC and offered no additional details on the move, and issued no press release. The board is ‘immediately commencing a search to fill the President and Chief Executive Officer positions’, but in the meantime, CFO Patrick DeLong will hold those titles on an interim basis.

Mr. Martin made news last year when he stated the company was aiming for $100m in sales by 2016, although he seemed to back off that comment during this summer’s shareholder meeting. With comments like ‘we will get rich together slowly’, Crimson’s management seemed to be playing the long game so a sudden shakeup at the top is a big surprise. It doesn’t seem planned and the very concise statement only serves to raise the intrigue level. Was he fired? Did he quit? A juicy scandal or maybe he just found a better job? I expect some further details to come out…stay tuned.

Disclosure: Author holds no position in any stock mentioned.