HanesBrands’ leadership shake-up

Steve’s breakdown: Somethings smells fishy over at Hanesbrands. They have “a rough patch in 2015”, the CEO let’s the door hit him in the ass but the company says nothing. I’m thinking there’s more change on the way and that could include agency relations.

WINSTON-SALEM, NC: Clothing maker HanesBrands said Monday that a leadership shakeup is in the works, as the company’s CEO relinquishes his title and the chief operating officer ascends to the top role.

CEO and Chairman Richard Noll, 58, will give up the CEO title as of Oct. 1 but will serve as executive chairman, the company said. COO Gerald Evans, 57, will take the reins as CEO.

The company did not provide any reasons for the changes, but the moves follow a rough patch in 2015, when sluggish foot traffic at U.S. retailers led to a disappointing performance for HanesBrands.

Noll told investors on a conference call in February that although revenue and operating profit grew 8% and 13%, respectively, in 2015, the results were “not up to the high standards to which we hold ourselves” and “we struggled a bit on the sales line all last year.”

“So, it’s time to refine our approach and regain our sales momentum,” he said at the time, according to a SeekingAlpha transcript.

Still, HanesBrands, which manufactures underwear and T-shirts, credited Noll with increasing the company’s sales from $4 billion to $6 billion and quintupling the market capitalization to $10 billion.

“The past decade has been a phenomenal journey, and I am very proud of the amazing accomplishments of our 65,000 employees,” Noll said in a statement. “This is the perfect time to transition our leadership. Our business is healthy, our acquisitions are performing well, and we have a very bright future. I have full confidence in Gerald’s readiness, ability, and vision to drive the business to even greater heights as CEO.”

Evans, who has served as COO since 2013, has worked for HanesBrands for 33 years, having designed what HanesBrands described as a “low-cost supply chain” and overseeing recent acquisitions. For example, the company recently purchased Pacific Brands, maker of the Jockey brand.

“I am honored to become CEO and look forward to driving the organization to the next level of success,” Evans said in a statement.

“Our brands are primed for growth, our acquisitions are adding significant value and scale, and our product development and innovation pipeline are stronger than ever. Along with our worldwide employees, I am committed to maximizing the value we can create as the very best basics apparel company in the world.”

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