Abu Dhabi’s Pure Harvest appoints former Careem VP Johan Persson as COO

Pure Harvest, the Abu Dhabi technology-enabled agribusiness has announced the expansion of its leadership team with three new appointments including Johan Persson, the former Vice President of Culture & Engagement (Engineering) at Careem as its Chief Operating Officer.

This comes two weeks after Pure Harvest announced the closing of its $20.6 million Series A together with a $100 million multi-stage investment commitment from Kuwaiti investment firm Wafra.

Johan, according to a statement by the company will lead its operations, including strategic sourcing, post-production, logistics, business optimization, and all functions within the operations’ primary activities value chain.

“He will help to drive the business’ long-term strategy and work across all functions to improve the company’s scalability and ensure operational excellence,” noted the statement.

The company that focuses on the production of greenhouse fruits and vegetables in the challenging climates of Gulf region using Dutch greenhouse growing technologies, has also appointed Thomas Larssen, president of a renowned greenhouse engineering & crop specialist consultancy firm in Canada as an Independent Technical Director. He will serve on the Board of Directors and will support Pure Harvest in its strategy, technology roadmap, evaluation and selection of key partnerships, and to secure and then efficiently deploy capital.

The third appointment is Thomas Prins who has over 17 years of experience in agronomical experience leading large-scale Dutch greenhouse operations and has joined the company as Senior Grower to support Head Grower Jan Prins to oversee Pure Harvest’s expansions in the region.

Sky Kurtz, the co-founder and CEO of Pure Harvest, commenting on the appointments, said, “I’m thrilled with the additions of Johan Persson, Thomas Prins, and Thomas Larssen to Pure Harvest at this critical juncture. I look forward to working with each of them to achieve our shared mission to offer affordable local, year-round, sustainably-grown fresh fruits & vegetables that taste like they should. We will continue to invest in people who have a proven track record of success to augment our capabilities.”

The company said that its mission of making it possible to sustainably grow safe, delicious, and affordable fresh local produce anywhere is aligned with the UAE’s National Strategy for Food Security towards innovation-driven and technology-enabled food production, “Pure Harvest is tackling the region’s food security challenges by leveraging technology to overcome the extreme arid climate.”

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