October 16, 2014

Bob McKnight Retires As Quiksilver’s Executive Chairman

Image via Transworld Business

Bob McKnight is retiring from Quiksilver as Executive Chairman and will now just serve on the board. McKnight gained the rights to Quik in the U.S. back in 1975 and has grown the company over the last 39 years. It is the one and only job he has ever had – and if you look at where it started (eating a beer coaster in a Torquay pub with Alan Green) to last year when it made $1.8 billion in sales, you have to admire what he’s done.

The last few years have seen quite a few ups and downs for the company – there were more than a couple of very scary moments for McKnight over the decades, notably in the 90’s and then again in the late 2000’s when the surf industry lost its mojo right around the time Quik was making some hefty deals with a lot of debt.

The stock price is 75% off for the year to date, and is 15% up on the news of the management change. The market is feeling the needs to shift in a new direction and Andy Mooney has their support… Well, most of them. Ryan Drexler at Consac LLC has put out a letter calling for management to scrap the turnaround plan as it is currently failing to meet its objectives. His preference is to sell the whole thing. Read more on that here.

And if you want to get a bit more insight into the man that got Quik to be a global ambassador for surf, skate and snow, check out our interview from back in 2007 over here.


by Dave