Dec 4, 2012

Puma Canada Forms Cobra Puma Golf Canada


SportLifestyle brand establishes the new regional headquarters for the premier golf
brand allowing for dedicated focus and resources for the growing sport businesses

MONTREAL, CANADA (DECEMBER 4th 2012) – The golf game just got sweeter in Canada. SportLifestyle brand, PUMA, announced the formation of COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada, a regional headquarters that will focus on the growth and development of the COBRA and PUMA Golf business in the Canadian market. Formed as a separate company from PUMA, effective December 1st, COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada will have strong ties to the global corporate offices of COBRA PUMA GOLF in Carlsbad, CA, the regional Canadian office for PUMA and the North American subsidiary, PUMA North America, based in Westford, Massachusetts.

“The new structures and formation of PUMA Canada and COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada are key, strategic moves as we focus on advancing the brands in the Canadian market as part of our North American plan,” said Jay Piccola, President and General Manager of PUMA North America, who oversees the PUMA brand across the North American continent. “With the laser-focused dedication of the new teams in place, I’m confident the brands will continue to evolve and grow to achieve our goals.”

After a successful tenure as President of PUMA Canada, Ted Fletcher will transition to President of COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada. Fletcher, who brings more than four decades of experience in the golf and sports categories, will command a renewed focus and alignment of COBRA PUMA GOLF as President. Fletcher is no stranger to the COBRA brand as he led COBRA Canada Golf Inc. from 1990 – 1998, as the exclusive distributor of golf clubs and equipment. Following this, Fletcher joined PUMA as President of the Canadian licensee for PUMA, Authentic Team Apparel (ATA) in 1999, and saw through the acquisition of ATA by PUMA in 2000 and the launch of PUMA Golf in Canada in 2006. Given his deep knowledge of the golf industry and proven track record for success, Fletcher was selected to join the global Board of Directors for COBRA PUMA GOLF in 2010, shortly after COBRA was acquired by PUMA North America. Fletcher’s involvement in the Board of Directors will allow for increased synergies and alignment of COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada with the corporate office. Jim MacPhee will transition from his current role as Chief Operating Officer of PUMA Canada to Chief Operating Officer / Chief Financial Officer of COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada. Since joining PUMA Canada, MacPhee has led the regional division of the brand to strong, continuous profitability year after year and served as the Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer prior to his COO role. In his new role, MacPhee will bring his financial management insight and passion for the brands to COBRA PUMA GOLF. MacPhee is also no stranger to the golf and sports worlds, serving as President and owner of a regional golf distribution company in Canada, and previous to that was the Vice President and CFO of Starter Canada. In this new COBRA PUMA GOLF structure, Bob Cote will be Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Cote will focus on building the golf brands in the Canadian market while leading the implementation of a dedicated strategy to grow business with independent, golf centric accounts. Cote’s level of expertise in the sports and golf industries, and his history with both the PUMA and COBRA brands make him a perfect candidate to build upon the growth in the Canadian market. Cote was an integral part of the PUMA Golf launch in 2006 in Canada and led sales and marketing for COBRA when the brand was under its former parent company.

“Creating a devoted COBRA PUMA GOLF team in Canada is a necessary and exciting move, and one that I am confident will show fruitful results in our market with both our wholesale partners and our consumers,” said Ted Fletcher, President of COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada. “I am thrilled with this new venture, eager to dedicate my time and efforts wholeheartedly into the golf world, while still remaining close with the PUMA family. The support we have received from our partners will help us take COBRA PUMA GOLF to new heights in Canada.”

PUMA Canada will continue to function and operate as a regional subsidiary as part of the PUMA North America team focused on the core PUMA business of sport and lifestyle, with headquarters in St. Laurent, Quebec and an office in Mississauga. The PUMA Canada team will be led by Ritch Benford as General Manager responsible for leading the PUMA and Tretorn brands to excellence in Canada. His position entails heading up sales, retail, marketing, merchandising and operations. With his new appointment, Benford will join the PUMA Canada Board of Directors. Benford has deep roots in the sporting goods industry across the US and Canada, not only on the brand side, but also with retailers like Foot Locker and Champs Sports. In 2000, Benford joined the licensee for PUMA in Canada, Authentic Team Apparel (ATA), through the acquisition of ATA to PUMA. In 2008, Benford was named Senior Vice President and General Merchandise Manager of PUMA Canada overseeing sales, merchandising and marketing for PUMA and Tretorn. During these years, he worked under the leadership of Ted Fletcher, who served as a colleague, friend and mentor. While at PUMA, Benford was part of the team that was recognized globally as PUMA’s Partner of the Year in 2006 and for Outstanding Country Accomplishment in 2010. Luc Cousineau has been appointed to Chief Operating Officer / Chief Financial Officer reporting to Benford. Cousineau joined PUMA Canada in 2006 as Financial Director and has elevated the financial planning, reporting and controlling of the subsidiary, which has led to positive results over the past five years. In 2012, Cousineau was appointed as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of PUMA Canada, overseeing the complete financial, accounting and business functions for the regional team. Prior to joining PUMA Canada, Cousineau spent almost ten years in the telecommunications industry and served in high level financial positions across the industry. In his new appointment, Cousineau will continue to bring his expertise in finance to the PUMA Canada business while expanding his responsibilities to also oversee customer care, information technology and operations. He will also join the PUMA Canada Board of Directors. In addition to the leadership of Benford and Cousineau, Mark Maguire will play an integral role in the growth of PUMA in Canada in his newly appointed role of Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing. Maguire joined PUMA in 2003 as the Director of Sport Business and swiftly moved up the sales ranks as a key contributor to the rapid and healthy brand growth. Maguire brings more than 22 years of experience in the footwear and apparel industries with expertise across both sport and fashion brands, sharp relationships across all sales channels and regional and international sales and marketing experience.

“A strong foundation for the PUMA brand has been established and I am excited to be a part of the new team that will continue to evolve and propel the PUMA brand,” said Ritch Benford, General Manager for PUMA Canada. The new facilities for COBRA PUMA GOLF Canada will be located at 6900 Transcanada Highway in Pointe-Claire, Quebec close to PUMA Canada’s current headquarters. Shared administrative resources and processes between PUMA Canada and COBRA PUMA GOLF will be implemented to allow for increased

No comments: