The foot-in-the-mouth founder of Lululemon Athletica inc. (NASDAQ:LULU) (TSE:LLL) has agreed to liquidate half his ownership in the volatile yoga apparel marketer.
Lululemon Athletica’s founder to sell 50% holdings to Advent International
Founder Chip Wilson will sell 50 percent of his holdings to private-equity firm Advent International for $845 million in bid to avoid additional controversy with the board of directors, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources familiar with the transaction.
In addition to selling stock, Advent will receive board influence in the form of two seats and have the satisfaction of slapping Lululemon on the hand by requiring the board commit to a governance review with a focus on the company’s strategic direction.
It is unclear if the governance review will focus on the CEO blaming problems with the fabric design on overweight women.
Lululemon Athletica’s founder learned what its like to offend the female audience
As previously reported in ValueWalk, Wilson, then Chief Executive Officer of the fashion forward apparel marketer learned first hand what its like to offend a smart and somewhat glamorous female audience.
In a television interview, as his horrified wife looked on, Wilson appeared to place blame on overweight customers for a flaw that transformed the yoga workout pants from a PG-13 experience to an R-rated experience.
And it is here where the new strategy might focus on. Product quality.
In the past year, shareholders have seen nearly one third of their investment in Lululemon Athletica inc. (NASDAQ:LULU) (TSE:LLL) vaporize. I disappearance of $3 billion in share value, the report notes, as product shortages and lowered profit forecasts indicate the ship is starting to take on water and emergency change just might be needed.
Shareholders in Lululemon Athletica inc. (NASDAQ:LULU) (TSE:LLL) liked the news, as the stock price was up over 6 percent on the news. Wilson was proud owner of 40 million shares, or 27.7% of the company, on April 1. Its not April Fools Day surprise that he now owns 13.85 percent of that same company.