Press Releases

Abe Hughes joins POET as Senior Vice President of Business Development

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (June 24, 2015) – Abe Hughes has joined POET as the Senior Vice President of Business Development. In this role, Hughes will help guide POET’s strategies for continued growth, whether through independent initiatives or partnerships, both in the U.S. and abroad.

“I’m excited to join the experienced and visionary leadership team at POET to help further shape the future of the biorefining and alternative energy industry,” Hughes said. “I look forward to helping POET continue its leadership, innovation and growth through unique partnerships, mergers and acquisitions, licensing and international expansion opportunities.”

“Abe’s experience and his personality are a great fit at POET,” CEO Jeff Lautt said. “There are exciting opportunities ahead in this industry, and I know Abe will help us make the most of them.”
Prior to joining POET, Hughes was Vice President North America for New Holland Agriculture and Construction, a world leader in the manufacture and sale of tractors, combines, hay tools and other agricultural and construction equipment.

Hughes brings more than 20 years of corporate and entrepreneurial experience to POET with agriculture, construction and pharmaceutical industry management and deal-making experience in a wide array of manufacturing, retailing and service industries. Hughes began his career in investment banking, completing mergers and acquisitions, leveraged buyouts and general corporate finance restructurings.
Hughes received his MBA from the Harvard Business School and his BA from Cornell University. He is originally from Arizona and married to Diana Girardi Karnas, of Porto Alegre, Brazil.

About POET

POET, one of the world’s largest ethanol producers, is a leader in biorefining through its efficient, vertically integrated approach to production. The 28-year-old company has a production capacity in excess of 1.7 billion gallons of ethanol and 9 billion pounds of high-protein animal feed annually from its network of 27 production facilities. POET, through its joint venture with DSM, also operates a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant in Emmetsburg, Iowa. For more information, visit

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