Under Armour CEO Patrik Frisk to step down, interim chief to take over June 1

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Patrik Frisk, recently appointed Chief Executive Officer Of Under Armour, speaks at the 2020 Under Armour Human Performance Summit on January 14, 2020 in Baltimore, Maryland.
Olivier Douliery | AFP | Getty Images

Under Armour said its president and chief executive officer, Patrik Frisk, will be stepping down, effective June 1, as the sportswear retailer searches for a replacement.

In the interim, current Chief Operating Officer Colin Browne will serve as president and CEO, the company said Wednesday in a press release. Frisk is expected to remain with Under Armour as an advisor through Sept. 1.

Frisk didn’t give a reason for his widely unexpected departure. He didn’t immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.

The former CEO of the footwear holding company Aldo Group joined Under Armour in 2017, and he took over as CEO from the company’s founder, Kevin Plank, in January 2020.

Plank told CNBC in a phone interview Wednesday evening that this will allow the company to start a new chapter of growth, particularly by beefing up its e-commerce operations.

“We believe that now we’re on our front foot,” he said. “And as we look at the future, we feel that this is the appropriate time for us to take a real growth perspective.” Plank later said: “We have the ability to be a much better digital company.”

Plank added that he is not currently being considered for the CEO role.

During his tenure, Frisk helped to drive Under Armour through a massive turnaround, which also happened to take place amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Frisk worked to limit the amount of discounting that Under Armour does with third-party retailers in an attempt to buoy profits. He also tried to make the brand appear more premium next to peers like Nike and Lululemon.

But that hasn’t come without challenges. Just earlier this month, Under Armour said that global supply chain obstacles were still hurting its business as renewed Covid lockdowns in China put a dent in demand. It offered a disappointing outlook for fiscal 2023, which runs from April 1 through March 31 of next year.

Under Armour said it will conduct both internal and external searches for its new CEO.

“I am extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished as a team,” Frisk said in a statement issued Wednesday. “Together, we have done a tremendous amount of work to strengthen this iconic brand while significantly solidifying its operations.”

The stock fell more than 3% in extended trading. Under Armour shares are down about 50% year to date.

Read the full press release from Under Armour here.

Sophie Tremblay

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