Matt Rock has been named president, Americas, at Pentland Brands. The role oversees Speedo as well as Pentland’s full portfolio, which includes Endura and Mitre for the Americas region.
Rock succeeds Jim Gerson, who is retiring at the end of this year after the successful transition of the Speedo North America business from PVH Corp. into Pentland Brands. Tom Whitmer, previously executive vice president, operations, Americas, has been promoted to chief operating officer, Americas.
Rock, who was formerly president, Asia Pacific, began his career working in sales for Puma and joined the Pentland Brands business in 2005 as sales director for Ted Baker footwear. He was promoted to managing director in 2007 and during that time, increased Ted Baker footwear sales by more than 800 percent and grew distribution from eight to 28 markets. Rock joined the Pentland Brands executive team as global supply chain director in 2015 and was appointed president, Asia Pacific, in 2018, responsible for both the global supply chain and the regional commercial teams. During this time, Rock transformed both functions into multibrand operations and led the development of a “digital first” China strategy, resulting in a 100 percent growth in sales.
Chirag Patel, chief executive officer of Pentland Brands, thanked Gerson for “his steady leadership throughout the transition. His knowledge, expertise, and deep understanding of people were instrumental in successfully onboarding the Speedo North America business,” he said.
Succeeding Rock as president, Asia Pacific, is Abhy Thomas Joseph, and Charlotte Cox continues in her role as president, EMEA.
“The acquisition and transition of the Speedo North America business means we are now a truly global organization. With strong leadership teams now in place across our three key regions — North America, Asia Pacific, and Europe — we’re in a great position to deliver on our ambition to build a global portfolio of pioneering brands that make life better,” Patel said.
In 2020, following its acquisition of the Speedo North America business from PVH for $170 million in cash, Pentland Brands outlined its plans to drive an increased emphasis on sustainability and bigger opportunities for its core brands — Speedo, Berghaus, Endura, Ellesse and SeaVees — in the U.S. market.