Werner von Pein
Chief Executive Officer
Previously, Mr. von Pein was the President and Chief Executive Officer of Halo, Purely For Pets, Inc. (“Halo”), which is a subsidiary of the Company. Prior to Halo, Mr. von Pein was most recently the Chief Executive Officer of Three Dog Bakery, a U.S. based pet treats and toys/accessories business with approximately $30 million in sales. In addition to his experience at Halo and Three Dog Bakery, Mr. von Pein also served as the Executive Vice President of Global Operations and New Ventures at Beefeaters, a manufacturer and seller of dog treats and wellness products. Beyond his significant experience in the pet industry, Mr. von Pein has held various leadership positions at a number of consumer branded businesses, most notably as the Chief Executive Officer of Lavazza-North America. Mr. von Pein also has significant foundational experience from his time at Rexall Sundown, Kraft and Procter and Gamble, where he worked on brands such as Nabisco Brands, Hebrew National, Gain, Cheer, Life Savers and Planters. Mr. von Pein holds an M.BA. from Xavier University and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Rochester.
Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Schulmeyer previously served as CFO - Global e-Commerce and CFO - Asia, at Walmart. During his tenure there, he led the financial planning, reporting and controls for the over $10 billion e-commerce business, with the business growing over 30% during his tenure as CFO, and closed and/or integrated 12 acquisitions over three years. Mr. Schulmeyer also led the finance and strategy across the Asian markets, including Japan, China and India, with over 650 stores.
Additionally, as former CFO, China Beverages, at PepsiCo, Mr. Schulmeyer managed financial controls and planning, business development, M&A and IT functions with more than 800 employees across 20 legal entities. During his tenure, China became the largest international beverage market for PepsiCo and accounted for about 20 percent of global volume growth. Mr. Schulmeyer joins Better Choice from his private consulting business, Faultline Solutions LLC, where he advised and consulted on the challenges involved in grocery and cross-border e-commerce.
Mr. Schulmeyer holds two Master of Science degrees in management and aero / astronautical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Bachelor of Science degree in aero / astronautical engineering from the University of Illinois.
President and Director of Operations of the Company
Mr. Santarsiero is also President of TruPet, LLC, where he has been responsible for overseeing the company’s financials and day-to-day operations since January 2014. Prior to his time at TruPet, LLC, Mr. Santarsiero founded RV Genie and RV Clear Price, online platforms designed to assist private parties, dealerships, manufacturers and suppliers navigate the RV industry and interact directly with consumers, where he served as President since January 2013. Mr. Santarsiero has also served as Sales and Marketing Manager at GSI Inc. from May 2013 to March 2014, International Sales Manager and Director of E-Commerce Platform at BriteLyt Inc. from May 2013 to March 2014, Sales Manager and Business Manager at Dimmitt Automotive Group from June 2012 to August 2013 and was founder and Chief Executive Officer of Terra Paws from January 2010 and May 2012.
Executive Vice President, Corporate Development and Director
Damian has extensive experience investing in and operating consumer and commodity related businesses. He was one of the Founders and CEO of Bona Vida (animal health CBD platform) before its acquisition by Better Choice Company, and consolidation with TruPet.
Prior to Better Choice, Damian was a Partner at Albaron Partners – a middle market investment firm focused on the cannabis and healthcare sectors. Damian has more than a decade of Wall Street investment experience managing over $2.5Bn in capital, having previously worked at Bain Capital, King Street, Silver Point and Magnetar.
Damian has an MBA and B.S. Econ, both from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania
Vice President of Sales
Mr. Weiss has nearly two decades experience as a sales leader with a track record of success in establishing channel partners, cultivating account relationships and delivering strong financial results and profitable growth in the pet industry.
Mr. Weiss previously served as vice president of sales at Arlee Pet Products. During his tenure, he launched several Pet Specialty brands which achieved cross channel, national distribution in his first year and continued to increase sales volume and market share year-over year. He was also instrumental in increasing company profit margins by implementing processes to manage a hybrid sales plan covering two-step distribution, E-Commerce drop shipping, retailer direct sales and direct to consumer sales. In addition, he successfully launched the Comfurt Collar product line in 2017, which eventually was carried by more than 1,200 retail locations within one year.
As the national director of sales at Dogswell, Mr. Weiss developed and achieved company target goals of 30% year-over-year growth, while implementing a goal-based bonus program aligning overall company growth targets with the individual targets of each team member (100% of goal achieved first year).
Mr. Weiss served in management roles within several divisions of Central Garden and Pet. He was directly responsible for fostering relationships between the company, it’s vendors and customers while growing sales within the Pet Specialty and Grocery channels. While at Central, he spearheaded the sales implementation of successful licensed promotional programs with The Walt Disney Company, MLB and the NFL.
Mr. Weiss holds a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science from the University of Massachusetts.