(Updates shares, adds shareholder Constellation Brands’ statement)
** U.S.-listed shares of Canadian cannabis producer pare losses and were last down 1.7% at $39.44 after falling 6.3% in premarket trading
** CGC says its founder Bruce Linton will step down as co-chief executive officer and board member, effective immediately; Linton tells CNBC that he was fired
** The move comes nearly two weeks after co reported bigger-than-expected Q4 net loss
** Canopy has been pouring cash into its business to open stores and expand operations, and some analysts have predicted co’s operating losses to deepen further in coming qtrs
** Linton’s exit leaves Mark Zekulin in charge of CGC; Constellation Brands, biggest CGC stockholder, says “fully support” decision to appoint Zekulin sole CEO
** Up to Tuesday’s close, co’s U.S.-listed shares jumped 49.35% this year; its stock listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange surged 43.4% (Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru)
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