Black Diamond Establishes New Global Brand Leadership Team

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Black Diamond Equipment®, a global innovator in climbing, skiing, mountain sports equipment and apparel, announces a series of moves that realign the leadership structure to best support future growth and efficiency to its vibrant gear, equipment, and apparel business.

“Entering 2014, we had two strategic imperatives,” explains Peter Metcalf, Black Diamond Inc. CEO. “The first was to transition to a globally-centric versus geographically-centric management structure. The second was to integrate our apparel business into Black Diamond Equipment at a brand level.”

Black Diamond Equipment’s apparel initiative was founded as a startup, running as an autonomous and separate business unit. This allowed a small team to succeed on an exceptionally tight timeline in terms of new product design and the creation of go-to-market strategies and programs. Now launched, the apparel organization will be integrated into the larger Black Diamond Equipment business.

As a result of these two strategic imperatives, a new brand leadership position has been created, managing director of Black Diamond Equipment. This new position replaces the president role and will report directly to Black Diamond Inc. COO, Mark Ritchie.

Tim Bantle, who joined the company to lead the startup of the apparel initiative, has been promoted into this new global brand leadership position. As Black Diamond Equipment’s managing director, Tim will oversee all brand aspects of gear, equipment, and apparel, while being supported by the executive team of Doug Heinrich, vice president of merchandising & design-equipment, Niclas Bornling vice president of marketing, Brian Mecham vice president of sales, and Olav Nietzer, who has been promoted into an expanded roll as European director of brand and sales.

“I joined Black Diamond three years ago compelled by Peter’s vision for the company,” says Bantle. “Black Diamond is a design and engineering driven company, but more importantly we’re totally committed to the user and the global community of climbers and backcountry skiers. This is an exciting time to step into this role.”

Prior to joining Black Diamond Equipment to start up the company's apparel division, Bantle worked at Patagonia where he started out in sales, moved in to product management and eventually lead the technical outerwear and equipment categories for the company.

Additionally, Martijn Linden joins the leadership team as vice president of merchandising & design-apparel. This new alignment provides a symmetrical and balanced leadership team and a truly global organization that consolidates brand leadership for product, sales and marketing.

Black Diamond Equipment also announces three other important staff promotions at it’s European headquarters in Basel, Switzerland. Thomas Hodel, is being promoted to ski line product manager and will perform this global leadership roll from the company’s European headquarters. Long time supply chain director, Marcel Buergi, is being promoted to director of operations. Finally, Wim De Jager, who formerly ran manufacturing operations at the company’s wholly owned facility in China, has been named the new vice president of global manufacturing.

Black Diamond Equipment is a manufacturer of equipment and clothing for climbing, skiing and mountain sports. By consistently building innovative, standard-setting products and actively preserving the mountain/canyon environment, Black Diamond Equipment has assumed a leadership role in the international outdoor community. For more information on Black Diamond Equipment, visit BlackDiamondEquipment.com

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