[Update] Phillip Vasyli, Vionic Group Founder, Dies; Wife Charged

Philip Vasyli, Founder of Vasyli Group,
Phillip Vasyli, founder of Vionic Group LLC.
Phillipvasyli.com.

Update April 3: Vasyli’s Wife Charged With Murder

Donna Vasyli, wife of Vionic Group founder Phillip Vasyli, was formerly charged with  his murder this week in a Nassau, Bahamas courtroom.

During her arraignment before Chief Magistrate Joyann Ferguson-Pratt on March 31, Donna was both vocal and emotional, Bahamian newspaper The Nassau Guardian reported.

Donna was not required to enter a plea and was subsequently remanded to the Bahamian Department of Corrections.

She is expected to return to court on May 20.

Update March 27: Three People Held in Connection With Vasyli Murder

Anthony Ferguson, acting commissioner of the Royal Bahamas Police Force, told FN exclusively today that three people are being held in police custody in connection with the death of Vionic Group founder Phillip Vasyli.

Ferguson said that shortly after Vasyli’s wife was taken into custody Tuesday morning, two additional suspects were brought in for questioning.

The acting commissioner said he couldn’t disclose the names of the two additional suspects but he could confirm that one of them is a family member of Vasyli’s.

FN also spoke with Assistant Commissioner of the Royal Bahamas Police Force Stephen Dean who noted that his department is still actively investigating the case.

“It’s an open investigation, we’re looking at all of the variables to determine what has happened and whether the three people being held have assisted or were directly involved,” Dean told FN this afternoon.

FN’s March 25 Report

FN spoke to Anthony Ferguson, acting commissioner of the Royal Bahamas Police Force, who confirmed that Vasyli’s wife, Donna Vasyli, is being held by Bahamian authorities as a person of interest in the murder investigation.

While Ferguson said he couldn’t reveal the “fine details” of the investigation, he confirmed that Vasyli’s body was found around 8 a.m. on Tuesday morning at his home in the upscale Old Fort Bay neighborhood on New Providence Island in the Bahamas.

“We suspect he was murdered some time during the course of the night,” Ferguson told FN.

Ferguson said Donna was detained for questioning shortly after police arrived on the scene Tuesday morning.

The acting commissioner also confirmed that Donna has retained a lawyer but declined to comment on whether authorities are reviewing footage that may have been captured on security cameras in the Vasyli’s home.

“The investigation is still ongoing,” said Ferguson.

FN’s March 24 Report

Phillip Vasyli, 59, founder and chairman of Vionic Group LLC, died of stab wounds on March 23 at his home in the Bahamas.

The Australian-born Vasyli, a podiatrist, founded Vasyli International in 1979, creating his first heat-moldable, pre-fabricated orthotic targeting the medical community. He later introduced the Orthaheel brand of after-market orthotics and footwear featuring the orthotic technology.

“We were deeply saddened by this sudden loss,” said Chris Gallagher, CEO, Vionic Group. “At this time Bruce Campbell, COO, and I are turning to what Phil would want, which is first to take care of everyone and then — as a Vasyli/Vionic family — we’ll work hard to continue his legacy of changing lives. We appreciate the outpouring of support and ask that everyone continue to consider Phil’s family in their thoughts and prayers.”

In July 2013, the San Rafael, Calif.-based Vionic Group’s three consumer brands — Dr. Andrew Weil Integrative Footwear, Orthaheel and Vionic — merged into a single brand, Vionic with Orthaheel Technology.

In addition to footwear and orthotics, Vasyli launched Vasyli Medical, offering products designed to serve the medical footwear community.