Birkenstock co-CEO Markus Bensberg exits
The co-CEO of Birkenstock, Markus Bensberg, is stepping away from the day-to-day operations of the German footwear company, leaving Oliver Reichert as sole CEO, effective immediately.
Moving forward, Bensberg will concentrate on his role as CEO of the family office run by Alex Birkenstock. The firm, which has seen considerable growth over the last few years, brings together Alex Birkenstock’s various entrepreneurial activities, including international real estate projects and property management.
Due to this role and the fact that Alex Birkenstock is still a Birkenstock stakeholder, Bensberg will continue to be closely associated with the company in the future.
Having first joined Birkenstock in February 1991, Bensberg has served in a range of different roles at the footwear maker over the last three decades, particularly in the areas of sales and product development. The executive has been co-CEO in partnership with Reichert since 2012.
Bensberg’s departure follows on the heels of Franco-American private equity firm L Catterton’s acquisition of a majority stake in Birkenstock in partnership with Bernard Arnault’s holding company, Financière Agache, earlier this month. Details of the transaction were not revealed.
“The successful closing of the transaction is a good time for my decision,” said Bensberg in a release. “Anyone who knows me well knows that I am and will always be closely connected to the company and the Birkenstock family. Birkenstock is and will remain my great passion. With Oliver Reichert as CEO, I know Birkenstock is in the best of hands.”
According to figures made available by the company, Birkenstock achieved sales of approximately 720 million euros and earnings of around 130 million euros in 2019. Despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which resulted in the temporary closure of the company’s factories for two months, Birkenstock’s 2020 revenue and profit were roughly in line with those of the prior year.
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