Rapala VMC reported that company EVPs Päivi Ohvo, Enrico Ravenni, and Joni Tuominen have each given notice and left Finland-based fishing equipment and Nordic ski manufacturers to pursue new career opportunities.

Ohvo was the managing director of Marttiini and Rapala VMC North Europe; Ravennil was the EVP and head of distribution in APAC countries and global rods; and Tuominen was the EVP of global business development and IT.

Ohvo, Ravenni and Tuominen left the company’s leadership team on June 14.

In explaining the changes, Rapala said, “Rapala VMC continues its strategic plan introduced this year. The Group is working continuously to become more agile on all operational levels, fulfilling the promise of being the best partner in the business. This approach is best enhanced by bringing decision-making closer to the local markets and defining clear country and regional accountabilities.”

The departures follow Rapala’s reporting that company sales in 2023 declined 19 percent year-over-year as a slowdown caused by economic challenges and high inflation caused retailers to focus on managing inventories and reduced ordering patterns. Rapala said de-stocking continued through 2023 but started to ease in the latter part of the year.

Rapala reported that Ohvo, Ravenni and Tuominen were “highly motivated to assist in transferring their current duties to the other members of the Group during the transition period. This process started immediately, and the Group is confident the change of duties will be performed in a timely and business-first manner.”

EVP David Neill will also step down from the global management team and return to his former position as president of Rapala Canada. Most recently, Neill was the EVP of product development and innovation. He reports to Marcus Twidale, president of Rapala USA.

Rapala said it would not look for replacements for exiting global management team employees and that its headcount would reduce the number of global management teams from eleven to seven. The responsibilities of the exiting global management team members are distributed between the remaining seven members or reorganized elsewhere.

COO Jean-Philippe Nicolle will reportedly focus on European performance improvement initiatives in addition to his global duties, reporting to Deputy CEO Cyrille Viellard and continuing as a global management team member.

“I want to thank Päivi, Enrico, and Joni for their outstanding service to Rapala VMC Corporation during all those years we’ve shared together. I wish you all the best in the future,” said Rapala VMC President and CEO Lars Ollberg.

The changes come as Rapala announced on April 1, 2024 that Stanislas de Castelnau, EVP and head of operations, retired after a 23-year career with the company at the end of March. Tuomas Akkanen, EVP and head of group supply chain and winter sports, and COO Jean-Philippe Nicolle assumed Castelnau’s responsibilities.

The company’s brands include Rapala, VMC, Sufix, 13Fishing, and Okuma in Europe.

Image courtesy Rapala