- BC Games
Connect with Us
Making Lemonade: Chip Wilson stepping down as chairman of lululemon
Chip Wilson is stepping down as chairman of lululemon.
Wilson made the announcement in a company press release on Monday. Lululemon is a Vancouver-based yoga/athletic apparel company and Wilson has been under fire for the past month, after customer complaints about lulu's clothing (it was reportedly pilling and sometimes see-through) were followed by his public comments that not all women's bodies were right for lululemon's pants.
"Lululemon's success has always been and will continue to be my highest priority," Wilson said in the release.
Michael Casey will become the chairman of the board after Wilson steps down prior to lululemon's annual meeting in June, 2014. Laurent Potdevin was also named the company's CEO on Monday.
"I am delighted that Laurent will be joining lululemon and believe his talents and experience ideally complement our existing management team," Wilson said. "I know he will have a strong impact on the business as he has the vision and leadership capabilities necessary to create and direct its future... As Laurent joins as CEO, I believe that now is the right time for me to begin to transition out of my role as chairman of the board."
The company introduced Potdevin on its YouTube page on Monday, as well:
Potdevin has previously worked with TOMS shoes, Burton snowboards, and LVMH.
In June, 2013, lululemon had posted its opening for a CEO on the company's website.
"You report to no one, you are the CEO (duh)," the posting read. "You are passionate about doing chief executive officer type stuff like making decisions, having a vision and being the head boss person."
Former CEO Christine Day announced she was stepping down earlier in June.
In November, Wilson caught controversy in an interview with Bloomberg TV's Trish Regan for the following comments, after he was asked about reported pilling on lululemon's pants:
"Frankly some women's bodies just don't actually work for it... (The pants) don't work for some women's bodies... it's really about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time, how much they use it."
Wilson was criticized heavily for his comments and then addressed his remarks with a public apology on lululemon's YouTube page. The apology was largely panned, with many saying it apologized to the employes of lululemon but not to the customers who may have been offended.
Perhaps Wilson's heaviest critic, however, was Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert, who named the businessman his Alpha Dog of the Week on November 18.
"It was a perfectly good apology, but some women's bodies just don't work for it," Colbert said in his character's trademark satire. "If Chip's 'I'm sorry' wasn't good enough, you probably couldn't hear it over the rubbing of your fat thighs."