- Lululemon founder Chip Wilson has written a new tell-all book called “Little Black Stretchy Pants,” which will be released on October 16.
- In it, he reveals that he and Lululemon met with Under Armour representatives about a possible acquisition in 2008.
- Wilson writes that he ultimately decided against acquiring the company due to its “macho philosophy.”
- Under Armour has historically been criticised for failing to reach female consumers.
Lululemon founder Chip Wilson pulls no punches in a new tell-all book called “Little Black Stretchy Pants.”
In it, he claims that he met with Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank to discuss an acquisition of the company by Lululemon in 2008.
Wilson writes that he ultimately decided against pursuing anything with Under Armour due to an experience he had at the meeting with Plank.
“However, after a meeting with Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank in 2008, I couldn’t see Kevin’s macho philosophy working with that of the Super Girls,” he wrote in his book. “Under Armour, I thought, had an in-your-face image of winning at all costs, male chauvinism, and leaving everybody else in the dust.”
“Super Girls” is a term that Wilson uses to describe Lululemon’s target customer.
A representative for Under Armour did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment on Wilson’s statements.
Back in 2008, Under Armour was still a relatively young brand. Wilson writes that at that time, it “was still making garments with big logos for impressionable teenage boys and insecure men.”
Under Armour has changed since then, signing big-name endorsements that might appeal to women, like ballerina Misty Copeland. But the company has still been criticised for failing to fully capture the female consumer base.
“While store design, marketing, and products remain male-focused, Under Armour will continue to struggle with women. This is a lost opportunity as female sports and fitness remain a fast-growth part of the market,” Neil Saunders, managing director of the retail consulting firm GlobalData Retail, wrote in a note to investors in April.
Plank addressed the issue during the company’s annual shareholder meeting in May.
“We don’t feel we’ve reached our true potential,” Plank said.
Read more about the Lululemon founder:
- Chip Wilson reveals the one question he asked himself every day while building Lululemon into the $US18 billion company it is today
- Lululemon founder Chip Wilson is a genius at spotting trends – and he has a wild new prediction about what we’ll all be wearing in the future
- Lululemon founder Chip Wilson describes how he made the company’s ex-CEO cry, slams Under Armour, and insults Diet Coke-drinking women, in a new tell-all book
- Lululemon’s controversial founder reveals in his new book that he isn’t entirely opposed to child labour and that his own children have worked since age 5
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