Cannabis firm Cresco appoints consulting exec Tom Manning as Chairman

04 February 2019 4 min. read

Medical cannabis company Cresco Labs has appointed Dun & Bradstreet CEO Tom Manning as its new Chairman of the Board. Manning has previously held chief leadership roles for Bain & Company, Capgemini and EY among others spanning a 20 year career in Asia.

As medical marijuana continues its march toward mainstream acceptance – both as a medicinal and recreational product – Cresco Labs, one of the largest self-described vertically integrated multistate cannabis operators in the United States, has appointed current Dun & Bradstreet CEO Tom Manning to Chairman of the Board. Manning boats an incredible 30-plus years of chief executive and board-level experience, with 20 of those spent at the helm of leading global consultancies and finance firms in Asia.

Kicking of his career in corporate strategy with McKinsey in 1979 (following an MBA from Stanford and Bachelor in East Asian studies at Harvard), where he spent six years and launched the consulting giant’s medical device and healthcare practice, Manning then served for a further four years as the CEO and Chairman of Ernst & Young Global Client Consulting for Asia, following that up as the Chairman and CEO of Capgemini Asia Pacific and then as the firm’s Global Managing Director for Strategy and Technology.

Recruited as a Senior Partner at Bain & Company, Manning would lead the management firm’s global IT practice in Asia and Silicon Valley, departing after to two years to take on the CEO role at Indachin, a professional services and private equity advisory based in Hong Kong. After five years at Indachin, Manning, a fluent Mandarin speaker, then became CEO of private equity player Cerberus Asia, based out of Beijing. Finally, in 2013, Manning joined data analytics firm Dun & Bradsteet (Cognizant’s original parent), appointed as its CEO last year.Cresco Labs appoints Dun & Bradstreet CEO Tom Manning as Chairman of the Board“Put very simply, Tom has an amazing career and education history that are assets to our Company, commented Cresco Labs CEO and cofounder Charles Bachtell. “We are honored to benefit from his expert leadership, keen intellect and deep knowledge of the trends driving the business economy in the 21st century. As we grow, we intend to round out our distinguished board with well-recognised influencers in important disciplines including consumer packaged goods and marketing.”

Now listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange, and offering a range of products across the everyday cannabis, medicinally-focused, connoisseur-grade, and even artisanal edibles consumer segments, Cresco Labs is a fast-growing end-to-end market provider, involved in every element of the ‘seed-to-sales process’, including the design and cultivation of crops through to distribution and the operation of its own dispensaries. Recently the company became the first entity to make a legal marijuana sale in Ohio – following Pennsylvania, the second state Cresco has achieved this milestone.

“I am honored to be appointed Chairman of the Board of Cresco Labs and to work with this tremendously talented and accomplished group of business leaders,” Manning said in response to his appointment. “From the founders’ initial vision to normalise and professionalise cannabis, all the way to becoming a publicly traded company in 2018, management and our board’s interests have been closely aligned with our customers and patients, shareholders, regulators and legislators.”

According to recent figures from business consultancy Grand View Research, the global legal marijuana market is projected to grow to a whopping ~$145 billion by the end of 2025 – up from an estimated ~$9 billion in 2016 – driven by the growing trend toward the decriminalisation all over the world. While Asian states have been generally more reluctant to enact reforms, and include some of the countries with the strictest drug enforcement policies worldwide, both Thailand and South Korea have in recent months legalised medical usage.