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Kathmandu shakes up leadership following Rip Curl acquisition

Kathmandu chief executive Reuben Casey

Outdoor retailer Kathmandu has appointed a new chief executive following the completion of its Rip Curl acquisition.

With Kathmandu’s $350 million takeover of surfing brand Rip Curl completed, the company named chief operating officer Reuben Casey as the new chief executive of the Kathmandu business.

Current chief executive Xavier Simonet will lead the combined Kathmandu group as group chief executive officer.

Chris Kinraid will continue with his role as group chief financial officer, which now includes oversight of Rip Curl. Michael Daly will continue with his role as chief executive officer of the Rip Curl business.

“Reuben has been a key contributor to the success of Kathmandu over the last few years,” Simonet said.

“I congratulate him on his promotion and I wish him all the very best success as chief executive officer of Kathmandu.”

Casey, Kinraid and Daly will report to Simonet.

Kathmandu’s shareholders voted overwhelmingly to acquire the surf brand earlier this month, with over 99.9 per cent in favour.

“Rip Curl is an iconic and authentic global action sports brand,” Kathmandu chairman David Kirk said at the time.

“Similar to Kathmandu’s core outdoor products category, the surf products market has a stable, committed core customer, with steady growth in participation and spending.

“The acquisition of Rip Curl is an opportunity for Kathmandu to considerable diversity its geographic footprint, channels to market and seasonality profile, and creates a NZ$1 billion outdoor and action sports company anchored by two iconic Australasian brands.”

The acquisition gives the combined group access to new international markets, with Rip Curl trading in South America, the Middle East, and South Africa, as well as parts of Southeast Asia where Kathmandu is not present.

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