SANTA CRUZ, CA (April 5, 2011) – Zero Motorcycles, the global leader in the electric motorcycle industry, today announced that its long-time CEO, Gene Banman, is retiring from the operational management of the company. Banman joined the company as COO in 2007 as employee number nine. Within 60 days he became CEO and led the effort to find professional investors to get the company off the ground. He has since raised tens of millions in funding, built a strong executive team and positioned Zero as worldwide leader in the electric motorcycle industry. Banman will stay on the board of directors and day-to-day operations will be directed by COO, Karl Wharton, who joined the company in February.
“It’s been a tremendous experience, getting Zero Motorcycles to this point,” said Banman. “I feel proud of the enormous progress we have made and of the excellent management team we have put in place that will take the company to the next level. I plan to get some R&R and travel, and then do some part time work with non-profits. I look forward to continuing to work with the company as a board member.”
”My colleagues and I knew Gene well before Invus became an investor in Zero Motorcycles,” said Aflalo Guimaraes, Managing Director of The Invus Group, LLC and Zero board member. “Gene, together with Neal Saiki, were instrumental in convincing us to back the company at the time when it was just a startup with a vision to transform the motorcycle industry. Gene’s leadership and the team he brought together have established Zero as the leading manufacturer and brand of electric motorcycles and put it on course to realize the vision of making electric motorcycles a mainstream segment of the industry by both appealing to experienced riders and bringing new customers into the camaraderie of riders. We are thankful for everything Gene has done for Zero to date and are glad that our association with Gene continues with his ongoing active participation on the board of the company.”