Lululemon CEO resigned in part due to romantic relationship with designer

Laurent Potdevin resigned from the top spot and from Lululemon’s board of directors

A relationship between the CEO of Lululemon Athletica Inc. and a former designer at the company is one of several instances in which the chief executive fell short of the retailer’s standards of conduct, a source familiar with the matter said Wednesday.

Laurent Potdevin resigned from the top spot and from Lululemon’s board of directors effectively immediately last Friday.

There was a range of incidents that contravened the company’s conduct code, the source said — including a years-long relationship with a designer who left the company in 2014 but continued working as a contractor later on, though the company did not renew her contract this year.

Potdevin could not be reached for comment about the workplace relationship, while Lululemon declined to respond.

The athleisure retailer said in a statement Tuesday that it “expects all employees to exemplify the highest levels of integrity and respect for one another, and (Potdevin) fell short of these standards of conduct.”

He and the company reached a separation agreement that will see the ex-CEO receive $3.35 million cash and a further $1.65 million in monthly instalments over 18 months, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Potdevin agreed not to sue the company and to co-operate with it in the future, among other stipulations, in exchange.

While the retailer’s board of directors is searching for a new CEO, some shareholder advocates and analysts are calling on the company to disclose more information about the abrupt resignation. At least two U.S. law firms have launched investigations into the company.

Potdevin took over as CEO at Lululemon from Christine Day after she announced plans to leave the company. The board of directors appointed him in December 2013. He previously served as president for TOMS Shoes and CEO of Burton Snowboards.

Aleksandra Sagan, The Canadian Press


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

VIC HIGH: City could lend expertise to district on heritage upgrades, councillor says

National Trust places historic high school on Canada’s Top 10 Endangered Places list

Two people injured in crash on Malahat

Crews have stopped the fuel truck leak but Trans-Canada Highway remains closed

Two kayakers rescued after falling into the water off Metchosin

Search and Rescue warns residents to check the forecast before heading out

Film Review: On Chesil Beach

Saoirse Ronan continues to shine in adaptation Ian McEwan novel about young newlyweds on their wedding day

Special Olympic bowlers strike gold

Athletes from Saanich and Esquimalt reach podium at Special Olympics Canada Bowling Championships

Media are not an arm of the police, Vice lawyer tells Supreme Court hearing

Ben Makuch challenges Ontario Court of Appeal ruling that he must give materials for stories to RCMP

B.C. launches plan to tackle doctor shortage, emergency room congestion

John Horgan aims to set up regional primary care networks in a ‘team-based’ approach

Vancouver, Squamish pipeline challenges dismissed by court in B.C.

Justice Christopher Grauer ruled the province’s decision to issue the certificate was reasonable

Early learning programs for Indigenous kids get $30M boost

B.C. government to help expand Aboriginal Head Start Association programs with three-year funding

Ferry sailing cancelled after ship’s second officer falls ill

Coastal Inspiration’s 8:15 p.m. sailing to Nanaimo on Tuesday cancelled, passengers to be compensated

B.C. man recounts intense rescue of couple caught in mudslide

Something told Dan Anderson to go back to the scene of a major mudslide on the long weekend.

Vancouver police cleared after man sets fire to himself, McDonald’s

Independent Investigations Office report released into March incident at Commercial and Broadway

Most Read