Earlier this week Lululemon Athletica, the yoga clothing company that made headlines in March for pulling its too-sheer yoga pants from shelves, announced that CEO Christine Day will be resigning, causing the brand’s stock to dive.
Lululemon hasn’t given a reason for her departure, but says it was her choice. Analysts say it’s not likely because of the sheer pants debacle, which many felt Day handled well, correcting the problem and getting pants back into stores quickly. Day will stay on board until a replacement is named, and according to The Globe and Mail at a recent investor’s conference she said the company is “in great shape” and will thrive after her departure. Following Day’s resignation on Monday, stock shares dropped by at least 17.5 percent Tuesday and another 5.2 percent Wednesday.
Lululemon attained big growth under Day’s helm, due in part to her implementation of a “scarcity model” where the company made fewer of their products than demanded so that they could avoid discounting items. Since she became CEO in 2008, the company has seen its annual sales reach $1 billion and its share price go up by 400 percent.
Following the announcement, news surfaced that Lululemon's chairman and founder Dennis "Chip" Wilson sold off $50 million worth of shares just four days prior. He had arranged to sell the stock in December through a prearranged plan that allows executives to buy or sell shares in their own company even if they have inside information, according to the Wall Street Journal. "Any suggestion of impropriety by Mr. Wilson is inaccurate and irresponsible," said a statement emailed by Wilson's assistant to the Wall Street Journal. Lululemon has not released a statement. Wilson still owns 39.9 million shares, or 27 percent, of the company.
In other news, Wilson recently released a free book titled 40,000 Days and Then You’re Dead through his new meditation website Whil. Whil features a 60-second meditation about “avoiding technological burnout” and asks readers to "enter a measurable goal." The book tells Wilson's story from his first yoga class, how Lululemon came to be, and everything in between. It will be released a chapter each week and promises contributions by Baron Baptiste, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, and Wilson’s first yoga instructor Fiona Slang, according to a press release.