Lululemon said in an internal memo to employees that Brynn Putnam, CEO of Mirror, has stepped down, effective immediately. Putnam will continue to serve as an advisor to Mirror until next July while Lululemon searches for her successor.
The memo attained first by CNBC was written by Putnam and Lululemon CEO Calvin McDonald and shared with employees on Tuesday.
In the memo, Putnam and McDonald said it was time for the company “to find the right candidate to drive the brand’s next phase of growth.”
“Sharing this now allows us to ensure a smooth transition as we identify the next CEO of Mirror, working with an external search firm to find the right candidate to drive the brand’s next phase of growth,” the memo read.
Putnam and McDonald wrote that the company “is in very good hands” and will be led jointly by three current Mirror executives: Tess Hales, head of customer; Olivia Lange, head of operations; and Kristie D’Ambrosio-Correll, chief technology officer. They report to McDonald.
Putnam founded the connected fitness startup back in 2016 and completed the sale to Lululemon in July 2020 for $500 million.
Over the past year, Lululemon has installed Mirror pop-in shops within 150 Lululemon stores in the US, with the aim of reaching 200 by the end of 2021. Mirror is expected to deliver between $250 million and $275 million in revenue in 2021. Lululemon has forecast up to $700 million in revenue by 2023.
On its recent second-quarter conference call, McDonald said Mirror continues to have “low awareness” among consumers and is challenged by the rising costs of digital marketing, but he said the company continues to be pleased with the performance of the start-up.
He noted that Mirror will start selling in Canada, recently opened its second production studio in New York to double the number of live classes and will launch an e-commerce site timed with the holiday season. He also talked favorably of the benefits of Mirror to Lululemon’s core customers.
He said, “We’re monitoring how macro factors currently impacting the cost of digital marketing are creating some pressure on customer acquisition costs at Mirror. We’re enthusiastic about the opportunities that exist for the business. We’ll continue monitoring the rising costs associated with CAC (customer acquisition cost) while we move ahead with launching exciting new innovations and leveraging the synergies Lululemon brings to the relationship.”
Photo courtesy Brynn Putnam, CNBC