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Robert Marcovitch, K2’s new president, spent the last month drawing up new organizational charts with a mandate to eliminate the silos and redundancy the company had become mired in. The result? Thirty-five employees were laid off two weeks ago, and then one more late last week.
Most of the changes hit K2 snowboard, but several of the cuts sliced deeply into Dana Design’s talent pool, axing product manager Geoff Rittmeyer, a longtime K2 employee, and, last week, Jesse Thompson, Dana’s lead designer and a one-time Dana Gleason protÃ©gÃ©.
Zac West remains now as the loan gun designing goods for Dana. Rick Saez, Dana’s Director of Sales and Marketing, also escaped the slash and burn unscathed.
SNEWS View: SNEWS phones have been ringing with news from insiders, friends and family of those still left within the Vashon walls, as well as from reps close to the company, and none of the news is too good right now. Morale appears to be in the toilet with folks wondering who is next. And just when K2 financials and other reports began to look promising for the company. Following the recent terminations at the Dana level, it appears to us that K2 management has no clear idea what to do with Dana, and that can’t be good for those remaining. It’s also not good news for retailers who have remained loyal to the pack company and have watched Saez resurrect the brand over the last two years from near oblivion. If we were betting folks, we’d lay even money that K2 will either further downsize Dana and roll it into another division, or, sell it. Hmmm, Mountain Hardwear just signed a pack designer we’ve been told, but we’d bet that the company could snap up Dana for a song. But is it a tune they want to sing?