Ed Clark, a veteran banker, and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne’s go-to business adviser, will be named as the new chairman for LCBO. CBC News exclusively reported the story on Thursday ahead of Canada’s nationwide legalization of marijuana.
The government-run LCBO has long been in charge of alcohol sales in Ontario. It will also run the new Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation (OCRC) as Canada readies to be the first developed nation in the world to legalize recreational marijuana this summer.
Sources told CBC News that the appointment of Clark, who spent 12 years as president and CEO of TD Bank Group, will be announced on Thursday but did not specify an exact date.
$1, a Symbolic Salary
One government source, meanwhile, said Clark will keep his job as Wynne’s advisor in tandem to his new role as LCBO chair, but wants to be compensated a symbolic $1 a year for the latter.
Clark was Wynne’s advisor since June 2015. During his tenure, major policy changes were seen in Ontario. He is the one who led a panel, which advised the Liberals to privatize Hydro One, only months after proposing to keep the electricity transmission and distribution utility under the government’s control.
His panel’s report was also behind the change that led to the sale of beer and wine in grocery stores.
Clark Wants to Bring Amazon to Ontario
Clark is eying to bring more money to the province by trying to lure the U.S. giant Amazon to build its new headquarters in Ontario.
Clark will chair LCBO, however, the government-run store’s board will continue to supervise the agency’s business affairs and builds its strategic plan. Also, its daily operations will be managed by its CEO.
Observers have criticized government‘s control over the future marijuana sales, saying that small and medium businesses will suffer following the much-anticipated legalization as they can’t compete against a government monopoly.