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VF Execs Sound Off on Promotions

The new leadership structure reflects momentum at the company.

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timberland Patrik Frisk

Patrik Frisk

Photo By Adam Detour

Vans Kevin Bailey

Kevin Bailey

Photo By Scott Witter

VF Corp.’s recent growth spurt was the impetus behind this week’s executive shuffling.

“We’re a much larger company than we were the last time we had a new structure, [which] was all the way back in 2011,” SVP and CFO Bob Shearer told Footwear News, noting that sales grew to $11.4 billion for fiscal year 2013, from $7.7 billion in 2010. “It just made some sense that some changes were appropriate.”

Additionally, he added, this brings the Americas region closer in structure to the international division, with one person at the head.
The Greensboro, N.C.-based company today named Steve Rendle to the newly created position of SVP of the Americas, with oversight over the firm’s Outdoor and Action Sports coalitions, as well as the jeanswear, sportswear, contemporary brands and imagewear groups. Rendle was previously VP and group president of Outdoor and Action Sports America.

“Steve’s a very talented guy, and this allows us to leverage more of his skill set across the company more broadly,” Shearer said.
Additionally, the firm split the Outdoor and Action Sports Coalition into two groups, and named Timberland President Patrik Frisk as president of the Outdoor Americas Coalition and Vans President Kevin Bailey as president of the Action Sports Americas Coalition. Bailey and Frisk will both continue to report to Rendle.

Frisk, who was appointed brand president at Timberland in 2011 and has been credited with driving impressive growth at the company, will now oversee the Timberland, SmartWool, The North Face, JanSport and Lucy brands. His successor should be named in the next few months.

Bailey has been president of Vans since 2009. During his tenure, the label has seen 17 consecutive quarters of double-digit sales growth. He will assume additional responsibility for the Reef and Eagle Creek brands, and will remain president of Vans.

“We have a good working relationship,” Bailey said of Jeff Moore, president of Reef, and Roger Spatz, president of Eagle Creek.

Bailey added his role largely will be to serve as a mentor to the two leaders. “They’re strong brands, so [I’ll be asking] how do we look for opportunities to sharpen the focus and push growth,” he said.

Bailey said he and Frisk plan to keep the Action Sports and Outdoor Groups close, even if they’re no longer under the same coalition. 

“We’ll keep them working together – we share a lot of resources anyway,” he said. “But we’ll stay closely connected, and plan how we’ll get our groups together.”