Lululemon Gets New CEO, Chairman Steps Down After Comments
A huge shakeup for apparel maker Lululemon. The company announced it found a new CEO, Laurent Potdevin. Also, founder and chairman Chip Davis is out.By Charlie McKeague | December 10, 2013
Yoga apparel maker Lululemon is turning up the heat in its front office. One high-profile player in, and two heading out.
The company announced on its website Monday that its chairman and founder, Chip Wilson, is stepping down.
The announcement comes about a month after Wilson ripped his own customers.
"He said, in part and I hate having to be the man that says it now. 'Frankly some women's bodies just don't actually work for the pants.'"
"It's not our pants, it's your butt?" (Via CNBC)
So Wilson, who came up with the idea for the company after attending a yoga class, will begin his transition out. And, in steps Laurent Potdevin, who has been chosen to replace CEO Christine Day. Earlier this year, Day made a personal decision to leave, but said she would remain until a new CEO was chosen.
Potdevin leaves his role as president of TOMS shoes. Before working at TOMS, he spent 15 years at Burton Snowboards.
In a press release from Lululemon, Potdevin said, "The tremendous success of [lululemon] to date and the potential for future growth are both exciting and inspiring. I look forward to working with everyone at lululemon to continue to build and drive the brand forward."
Lululemon has enjoyed incredible success and growth in recent years — becoming a global leader in up-market yoga apparel. But in 2013, Lulu has seen much controversy.
Earlier this year, the company recalled two lines of yoga pants because the fabric was too see-through. That cost millions of dollars and was the first ding to the brand's reputation.
And then came the comments from Wilson. Despite the controversies, the company is still growing revenues by more than 20% a year and is expected to enjoy a robust holiday quarter.