Patagonia recruits new general manager of EMEA from Nike
In summer 2020, Ryan Gellert, who had led Patagonia's European operations since 2014, was promoted to the role of CEO at the Ventura, California-based company. Now the American outdoor brand has announced the name of his successor as general manager of the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region: Matthijs Visch.
Based in Amsterdam, Visch is a seasoned executive in the sportswear industry. Having started his career at Procter & Gamble, he has spent the last 19 years at Nike, where he most recently held the role of general manager of EMEA East, responsible for Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Starting May, he will be overseeing a business unit that includes 230 employees and 11 stores at Patagonia, a company which is currently booming. He will report to John Collins, vice president of global sales.
"Meeting Matthijs, I was impressed by his compassionate, authentic approach to leadership and team-building. He has lived all over the world and brings rich experiences and diverse perspectives to his work," said Collins in a release. "He is a trail runner and skier, shares Patagonia’s commitment to protecting the wild places around us and brings with him a dedication to social justice. As we continue to grow our business and our environmental activism, throughout the EMEA region, I feel confident that Matthijs is the right person to lead the business and our people on the journey ahead."
Patagonia, which places its ethical commitments front and center, is a certified B corp, a title conceded to companies displaying responsibility in both social and environmental issues. Although very open about its ethical initiatives, the brand founded by Yvon Chouinard in 1973 is more discreet when it comes to its revenues. The company reportedly achieved more than $1 billion in revenue in 2017.
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