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Columbia Sportswear Company (Nasdaq:COLM), a leading innovator in the active outdoor apparel, footwear, accessories and equipment industries, announced today the appointment of Franco Fogliato as senior vice president of Europe, reporting directly to president and CEO Tim Boyle, effective November 4, 2013.
Fogliato, 44, will be responsible for establishing and executing sales, distribution, and marketing strategies for the company’s Columbia Sportswear®, Mountain Hardwear®, and SOREL® brands, sold through more than 5,000 wholesale customers across Europe.
Mr. Fogliato brings 17 years of European sales and marketing experience in the action sports and outdoor footwear and apparel industries. Since 2004 he has served as general manager of Europe for the Billabong Group (BBG.AX) and as a member of company’s executive board. In that role, he led profitable regional strategies behind the company’s portfolio of 8 brands which drove growth and market share gains. From 1997 through 2003, Fogliato held various European leadership roles with The North Face® brand, culminating as general manager of Western Europe.
“Our selection of a person with Franco’s extensive European leadership experience reflects our strong commitment to Europe as a critical region for the company’s long-term success,” said Columbia president and CEO Tim Boyle. “He understands the European consumer and has strong relationships with our valued wholesale customers throughout the region. We look forward to his contributions as we seek to drive consumer demand in key European markets and improve our regional profitability.”
“I am excited to join the Columbia Sportswear team,” said Fogliato. “European consumers are increasingly seeking outstanding performance at great value – two things for which the Columbia, Mountain Hardwear, and SOREL brands are well-known and which provide a great foundation to pursue growth across the region.”
In a related move, Doug Morse, who has served as interim general manager of the company’s Europe-direct business since February 2013, will work with Franco through the end of this year to ensure a smooth transition, and then relocate to the company’s Portland, Oregon headquarters in January 2014 to assume the newly created role of chief business development and strategic planning officer, reporting to senior vice president of finance and chief financial officer Tom Cusick.