VF Corp. CEO Steve Rendle Retires, Interim Replacement Named
Steve Rendle has retired from his roles as CEO, chairman and president of VF Corporation, effective immediately, the company said Monday. VF Corp. owns Supreme, Vans, The North Face, Timberland, Dickies, among other consumer brands. Rendle, has retired “by mutual agreement with the board,” according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Benno Dorer, the lead independent director of the VF board of directors, has been named interim president and CEO, effective immediately.
Rendle spent six years as CEO and has been with VF Corp. for nearly 25 years. Dorer joined the VF board in 2017 and has served as the lead independent director since 2021. Dorer was the CEO of Clorox from 2014 to 2020.
Total Retail's Take: While the announcement that Rendle was stepping down came as a surprise to many in the industry, close retail watchers are saying it was bound to happen thanks to the company's recent poor performance. For example, its biggest and most profitable brand, Vans, is in the midst of a turnaround that has yet to bear financial fruit. Furthermore, the $2.1 billion Supreme acquisition added debt to VF Corporation's balance sheet, and it now expects total revenue growth in the second half of FY23 to be lower than previously outlined.
Indeed, VF Corp. said in the same release announcing Rendle's retirement that it expected revenue for the full year to increase 3 percent to 4 percent compared to the previous guidance of 5 percent to 6 percent. Why the pull back? VF is blaming weaker-than-anticipated consumer demand across its categories that has resulted in a "more elevated than expected promotional environment" as well as "order cancellations in the wholesale channel to manage trade inventories."