Who’s on the move: Accell Group's new North American team; Sherpa names sales director; plus PR changes for many

Find out who’s changing jobs and getting promoted in the outdoor industry.

  • Accell Group, in the Netherlands, announced the formation of Accell North America in Kent, Wash. The new entity will include: Raleigh America (Raleigh and Diamondback), Raleigh Canada, Seattle Bike Supply, Currie Technologies and Lapierre North America. Raleigh President Steve Meineke will lead the new group as CEO, Chris Speyer was promoted to chief operating officer and Sharon Robinson will serve as chief financial officer. A new division has been established for Lapierre North America, led by Kirk Bauch as the director of sales and marketing, along with Lorna Schouten as marketing manager. Greg Blackwell, announced as the president of Seattle Bike Supply in January, will continue. Larry Pizzi will continue to serve as Currie Technologies’ president. Dave Taylor will lead Raleigh Canada sales. And George Simone was promoted to Raleigh America national sales director. Officials said the multi-brand partnership will provide more efficiency and coordination on the back end for better service on the front end.
  • Sherpa Adventure Gear named Bill Chandler as its new sales director for North America. Chandler will be responsible for directing all sales strategies and expanding the dealer network for Sherpa Adventure Gear in the United States and Canada.Chandler began his 30-year outdoor career on the sales floor with mid-Atlantic retailer Hudson Trail Outfitters, and ultimately established his own independent sales agency called Nomad, Inc., which served the Southeast U.S. region until 2012. Under his stewardship, the agency represented many brands including Mountain Hardwear, Montrail, Darn Tough Vermont, Gregory and Katadyn. While Sherpa North America is based in Kent, Wash., Chandler will continue to operate from Knoxville, Tenn.
  • Hoka One One, in Richmond, Calif., recently acquired by Deckers Outdoor, named Denny Ink, headed by Chris Denny, to manage its public relations and communications strategy. Denny Ink will handle media outreach, strategic communications counsel and social marketing support for Hoka One One’s trail and road shoe collections.
  • Suspension Experts, in Asheville, N.C., hired Darby Communications, led by Coral Darby, as its public relations agency of record. Suspension Experts employs technicians to work on suspension for riders, bike shops and manufacturers in the United States.
  • Skora Running, in Portland, Ore., hired Frank’s Garage, a footwear marketing firm also in Portland, to build a results-driven strategy to help align the minimalist running with target consumers and retailers.
  • RiverRestoration of Glenwood Springs, Colo., recently tapped Backbone Media in Carbondale, Colo., headed up by Nate Simmons, Penn Newhard and Greg Williams, as its public relations and media agency. RiverRestoration is a river design and engineering firm working to revitalize waterways across North America.

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