Shinola chief executive officer Tom Lewand is departing the company. Shinola revealed Lewand’s exit on Friday afternoon, saying he “will step away at yearend to take on a new professional role.” Lewand had been with the company since 2016. Shinola has not yet named a successor or interim ceo.
“I am incredibly grateful to Tom Kartsotis and our board of directors for the opportunity to help lead an amazing brand to its next phase of growth. Thanks to the talented women and men at Shinola, we have made tremendous progress in improving our business over the past two years. The company is in a great position to continue that progress into a bright future,” Lewand said in a statement.
While the company declined to share Lewand’s new role, the executive hinted that he will still have roots in Detroit. “Decisions like these are never easy. However, the amazing business and civic climate in our community has afforded me the chance to consider some once-in-a-lifetime professional opportunities, which I look forward to sharing at the appropriate time,” he said.
“Tom Lewand was instrumental in leading our team and preparing Shinola for the evolution of its next phase of growth. He will be missed. The board and I are very confident in our capable senior team and their ability to lead Shinola into its next chapter,” said Shinola founder Kartsotis.
Prior to joining Shinola, Lewand was president for the Detroit Lions football team.
In multiple interviews with WWD this summer, Lewand said Shinola was seeing marked growth. Sources, however, said sales were in steep decline and these continued losses resulted in deep cuts, store closures and layoffs. Sources alleged that the company lacked focus and had entered too many categories, which confused the consumer and alienated its core watch-buying base.