Mizuno USA announced a number of organizational changes to better create a more effective, efficient operational structure. The organizational changes will streamline divisional operations with the combination of Diamond Sports/Volleyball and Golf divisions under the leadership of Dick Lyons, VP/GM of Mizuno USA Golf Division.
new role, Lyons will be tasked to drive brand strength, sales,
profitability and market share for both divisions. Connected to this
transition, Chuck Couch, currently director of product management, Golf,
has been promoted to VP of product Management for the Golf Division.
Couch will oversee Golf product, planning and development and
promotional activities in support of strategic objectives. The Running
division will remain under the direction of industry veteran and current
VP/GM, Fritz Taylor.
In order to improve service levels, cost structure and sustain the
brand's longstanding quality reputation, a new VP of Sourcing position
has also been defined in the new organization. Dick Grapenthin, former
VP/GM of Diamond Sports/Volleyball, will shift his expertise to focus
solely on this function across all Mizuno USA divisions and product
The overall actions are designed to drive company-wide accelerated growth over the next few years.
evolution and diversity of the retail landscape driven by many factors,
including new technology and changing consumer behavior, has made these
moves essential," said Bob Puccini, President Mizuno USA, Inc.,
Chairman, Mizuno Canada, Ltd., and Director of Mizuno Corporation. "Our
ultimate goal is to accelerate development of a stronger consumer
franchise by building on the existing strength of our brand. This
should not only grow our business, but also our customers' businesses.
The new structure will give us greater synergy, focus and flexibility as
a brand and company. It also ensures our partners receive the
strategic and executional attention they deserve."
and proven experience Dick Lyons, Dick Grapenthin and Chuck Couch bring
to the business is reflected in our past results. The impact in their
new roles will be critical to our future success," added Puccini.
"Changing consumer behavior and the evolution of trade channels has
driven the shift in roles. We now have realigned resources to better
enable us to improve our margins to invest the savings in our brand and
ultimately drive growth."
To further accelerate and leverage the
strong growth in the Americas markets, the Mizuno Portland Design
Center will be reinforced and expanded to assume global performance
running footwear responsibility. As a result, Rod Foley will be promoted
to Global Director, Product Management, Performance Running Footwear
tasked to drive innovation and product design for the brand in not only
the Americas markets, but also on a global scale.
"Running is a
market that we continue to see new consumers joining all around the
world, and remains a priority growth area for Mizuno Corporation," said
Puccini. "Rod has been a key contributor to our success in the U.S. and I
am pleased to see him play a bigger, global role."
center will continue to evolve as the global center of excellence for
performance running footwear working closely with global counterparts
and be comprised of a global team. Foley, along with additional
designers and developers from Mizuno Corporation in Japan, will be
relocated to Portland, Ore. to reinforce the initiative and join the
existing design staff.
Another element of these changes is the
consolidation of the sales functions for the company's three divisions,
running, team sports and golf, under one leadership. The new sales
organization will enable improved and focused service and resources to
all trade partners. The transition will be effective upon the hiring of
the new Corporate VP of Sales. An executive search has begun to find the
strongest possible candidate to build and lead the new multi-division
"All of these changes have one purpose - to accelerate
our growth," said Puccini. "We expect to achieve success by offering
engaging brand experiences to our consumers, working strategically with
various channel partners and improving our margin structure. This new
structure places us in a better position to adapt to the ever evolving
marketplace and help ensure we continue to deliver sustainable and
superior financial results."
Mizuno USA, Inc. is a wholly owned
subsidiary of Mizuno Corporation, one of the largest specialty sporting
goods manufacturers in the world. Mizuno USA, Inc. manufactures and
distributes baseball, golf, softball, running, track & field, and
volleyball equipment, apparel, and footwear for North America. Mizuno
USA, Inc. is based in Norcross, GA.
By press rleease through SportsOneSource
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