Chip Wilson is finally quitting the board of directors of the yoga wear retailer. We think its about time!
"I now believe the company has returned to the core values that made it great," he said in a statement.Wilson, who founded Lululemon in 1998, withdrew from day-to-day management in early 2012, and said in December 2013 he was stepping down as chairman. But he stayed on as a director.
Conveniently, Wilson boomeranged back to take a conveniently took on more active role in operations in spring 2013, after Lululemon issued a high-profile recall of its signature yoga pants following complaints they were too see-through. The recall led to the departures of top executives and a public relations headache. In December 2013, the company named a new chief executive officer, Laurent Potdevin. As is often the case with founders who have stayed too close too long, problems were compounded when Wilson said fabric in some pants was not holding up because "some women's bodies just actually don't work" for Lululemon's clothing. Backpedalling, Wilson later said he was "sad for the repercussions of his actions." Tensions remained, with Wilson lashing out last June, saying the new chairman and another director were too focused on short-term growth.
"We believe Mr. Wilson's departure solidifies stability of the leadershipteam going forward, and lessens tension behind decision making and voting power," Stifel equity analyst Jim Duffy said in a research note.
"Since the Advent announcement in late summer, infighting seems to have calmed, likely in an effort to turn around public perception of the brand," said Duffy.