Crocs Inc. announced that brand management veteran Andrew Rees will lead the firm while it continues to look for a CEO.
In addition to serving as president of the Niwot, Colo.-based company, Rees also will take on the role of principal executive officer until the hunt for a permanent CEO is complete.
Rees joins Crocs from global management consulting firm LEK Consulting and has extensive experience in the branded footwear space, said Thomas Smach, Crocs’ chairman of the board and interim CEO.
“Andrew has led the LEK team that has been working closely with us to help develop our strategic plan, and we feel that he is best positioned to lead the Crocs management team in executing that plan,” he said, reiterating that 2014 will be a significant transition period for the company.
Smach will step down as temporary CEO when Rees joins the firm in June.
“We have been buying back stock under our previously announced $350 million stock repurchase program,” Smach continued, “and now we have taken an important next step in our transition plan by hiring a president who has global marketing, brand building and retail expertise to execute on our short-term and long-term priorities and strategic plans, which include a sharper strategic focus on more profitable top-line growth.
He said Rees’ immediate focus will be to improve the company’s financial performance, particularly in the Americas and Japan, as well as enhance its global retail execution.
On Tuesday, Crocs shares closed down 1.39 percent, or 21 cents, at $14.85.