Hi-Tec Sports PLC is entering its fourth year of a five year repositioning strategy. It started in 2002 with the re-branding of its Hi-Tec Brand, focusing on the core categories of Outdoor, Golf and Court. Over the next 2 years, this was followed by centralisation of Product and Marketing activities in the head offices in Essex, UK. Now, on the basis of a 3rd consecutive growth year, Hi-Tec Group-CEO Martin Binnendijk has embarked on probably the most significant phase of his transition strategy.
Hi-Tec Sports PLC has formed separate global divisions for Hi-Tec and Magnum (formerly a “Category” of Hi-Tec). The Hi-Tec division will be run by Tony Linford, formerly in charge of Hi-Tec Sports PLCs Group Marketing. The Magnum division will be headed up by Paul Brooks, who has just finished the third double-digit growth year as President & CEO of Hi-Tecs North American subsidiary, Hi-Tec Sports USA. The role change is effective immediately, though Brooks will continue to work out of the US subsidiary until the summer of 2006, when he will relocate back to his roots in the UK. Brooks has a strong passion for Magnum, having grown the brand considerably as Magnum Global Category Director several years prior to being appointed President & CEO of Hi-Tec Sports USA.
Brooks comments “I am excited to have the opportunity to take the first major step in evolving Magnum from a category to a separate brand so that Magnum can be given the resources it deserves to be able to reach its full potential.”
In a new matrix set-up, Hi-Tec Sports PLC has been further divided in its structure. The President/CEO roles have been divided into two executive leadership focuses: Sales and Operations.
Sales will be separated into 3 main regions; North America, Europe and International. Bill Berta will continue to head up Sales for North America (Hi-Tec Sports USA), including Canada and the recently-acquired Magnum factory in Maine. European Sales, which include UK, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Benelux, Italy and the Nordic countries, will be managed by David Goulding. Peter Lawson will continue to run the successful International distributor and licensee business.
Long-term Hi-Tec veteran Bob Kaiser has been appointed to run North American Operations, reporting to Hi-Tec Sports PLCs new CFO Mike Nevin. Ian Tripcony will run European Operations. Also reporting to Nevin, and in charge of the new function of Group Sourcing will be Duncan Patmore, who has been instrumental in the success of Hi-Tec Golf. Completing the companys global leadership team is Nick de Haaff, who has been appointed to the new position of Group Treasurer and who will be responsible for centralizing the companys finances.
To ensure the success of Magnums recently-acquired factory in Lewiston, Maine, Falcon Manufacturing Company LLC, Magnum USA has formed a new leadership team of David Grant (Operations) and Matt Brown (Sales), reporting to Bob Kaiser and Bill Berta, respectively. Brown will leave his role of Magnum Global Category Director in order to grow the Factorys sales, with a targeted focus on obtaining military contracts, as well as being responsible for all Magnum product needs within the USA.
Hi-Tec Spain, Hi-Tec Mid Europe and Hi-Tec South Africa will continue to operate as autonomous subsidiaries under the leadership of Cato Fernandez, Petr Hrbacek and Mickey Mallet, respectively.
The aforementioned changes are all part of a five-year global repositioning strategy set forth by Hi-Tec Sports PLC four years ago.
Frank van Wezel, Hi-Tecs Founder and Chairman is excited about the continued transformation of his company. After privatizing in 2001, he decided to invest in the brand to prepare it for the next century. As a result of these investments and a complete overhaul of the companys product lines, Hi-Tec Sports PLC realized another 6% sales growth in 2005, and has again strong growth expectations going into the new year.