Merrell announces new global brand president
Wolverine Worldwide veteran Chris Hufnagel to lead Merrell
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ROCKFORD, Mich., Sept. 12, 2019 — Wolverine World Wide, Inc. (NYSE:WWW) announced today the appointment of Chris Hufnagel as Global Brand President of Merrell®, the largest brand within its portfolio. A 10-year veteran of Wolverine, Hufnagel most recently served as Global Brand President of Cat® Footwear. In his new role, Hufnagel will continue reporting to Todd Spaletto, President of the Wolverine Michigan Group.
“Chris took aggressive action to help the Cat Footwear team rapidly evolve its growth and go-to-market strategies,” said Spaletto. “His demonstrated collaboration and partnerships within Wolverine, coupled with deep apparel and lifestyle brand experience, make him an ideal fit to build on the strong foundation already in place at Merrell.”
Hufnagel replaces Sue Rechner, who is leaving the company. “The Merrell brand has made significant accomplishments over the past two years with Sue’s leadership, and we want to thank her for her great work and wish her only the very best,” Spaletto said.
During his tenure at Wolverine, Hufnagel has also served as President of Consumer Direct, Senior Vice President and Head of Corporate Strategy, and Co-Chief Transformation Officer for the WOLVERINE WAY FORWARD initiative. In addition, he started Wolverine’s consumer insights and market intelligence function and, before joining the company, held leadership roles at Under Armour, the Gap, and Abercrombie & Fitch.
“Merrell is a very special brand with a rich heritage and an even more promising future,” Hufnagel said. “I’m excited to join the team as we work together to build amazing products, tell compelling stories, drive accelerated growth around the world, and continue helping everyone experience the power of the trail.”
Hufnagel holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and history from Alma College. He is a member of the Grand Rapids Symphony’s board of directors, the Grand Rapids Art Museum’s board of trustees and the President’s Advisory Council at Alma College.
ABOUT WOLVERINE WORLDWIDE
With a commitment to service and product excellence, Wolverine World Wide, Inc. is one of the world’s leading marketers and licensors of branded casual, active lifestyle, work, outdoor sport, athletic, children’s and uniform footwear and apparel. The company’s portfolio of highly recognized brands includes: Merrell®, Sperry®, Hush Puppies®, Saucony®, Wolverine®, Keds®, Stride Rite®, Chaco®, Bates®, and HYTEST®. The company also is the global footwear licensee of the popular brands Cat® and Harley-Davidson®. The company’s products are carried by leading retailers in the U.S. and globally in approximately 200 countries and territories. For additional information, please visit our website, www.wolverineworldwide.com.
Merrell® exists to give you all you really need to discover the simple yet profound power of the trail. We believe the trail is for everyone. Our goal is to provide thoughtfully designed, rigorously tested products that over-deliver on performance, versatility and durability. Because when you’ve got air in your lungs and good shoes on your feet, you’ve got everything you need. Visit Merrell.com or follow us on social at @merrell and @merrelloutside. www.merrell.com.
CONTACT: Valerie Personen