Spin Master co-founders plan to step down from co-CEO role next year

Spin Master co-founders plan to step down from co-CEO role next year
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TORONTO — Toy company Spin Master Corp. said on Monday that co-founders Ronnen Harary and Anton Rabie will step down as co-chief executives next year.

The maker of Hatchimals and Paw Patrol toys announced that Max Rangel has been appointed global president effective in January and will add the chief executive title in April.

Rangel joins Spin Master from SC Johnson & Sons, after spending 22 years at Procter and Gamble and more than three years at The Hershey Company. Harary and Rabie are expected to work with Rangel over the next several months and remain on the company’s board.

The new leadership comes as the Toronto-based company reorganizes its business. The company said it is promoting three existing executives to become president of three divisions or “creative centres”: toys, entertainment and digital games.

Spin Master said Harary will also continue to guide the growth of the company’s digital games creative centre and Rabie will continue to provide input on the company’s culture globally. Spin Master’s third co-founder Ben Varadi will continue in his role as chief creative officer.

The shakeup in Spin Master’s C-Suite comes as the company has expanded into new categories, like Harry Potter and Rubik’s Cubes, but has also struggled with what Harary has called “operational challenges.” Last year, the company said it was trying to address “significantly higher than normal freight, warehousing and distribution costs.”

Last month, the company reported that it had cut its distribution centres and warehouses from 18 to five, and slashed inventory 28 per cent compared with last year, in a bid for efficiency. The company needed to track more than 13,000 stock-keeping units at the beginning of 2020, but has been paring that down to about 7,500.

The company’s announcement highlighted Rangel’s “seasoned” background managing complex operations as an executive in global businesses that sell multiple consumer goods.

In the statement announcing Rangel’s role as CEO, Harary said “the time is right to transition Spin Master beyond its founders on a day-to-day operating level.”

“Since founding Spin Master together more than 26 years ago, we’ve grown from a single, item-driven business to a leading global children’s entertainment company,” said Harary.

“This natural transition will allow Anton and I to emphasize our strategic roles where we can focus our efforts on shepherding Spin Master’s course for the future.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 14, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:TOY)

Anita Balakrishnan, The Canadian Press

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