Hervé Chabert

Hervé Chabert

Work History

Work History
Mar 2004 - Feb 2008

General Manager

Patagonia Europe

When I took the job on March 1st, 2004, I was tasked with three main objectives:

1.Move the company from Paris to Annecy (closer to its core markets)

2.Develop a comprehensive business plan to grow the European business

3.Bring back Patagonia Europe to profitability

Some Achievements

·The move of the company from Paris to Annecy was completed in August 2004. We had a 50% turnover of our work force, and consequently had to recruit, train, structure a largely renewed team.I was personally involved with each employee to motivate them and build a team spirit.

·A comprehensive 3-year business plan was delivered and approved by our mother company in January 2005. The most strategic parts of the plan were:

oDistribution: develop a more consumer-direct approach to our distribution

    • Launch European e-commerce website. The site opened in November 2006 and generated M€1.4 in sales
    • Develop a “partner store” concept with our current dealers. These stores were opened in Amsterdam, Cortina, and Zurich...
    • Implementation of a B to B platform for dealer ordering (effective in January 2008)

oProducts: have more European adapted products

    • Development of a 32 models sportswear collection for fall 2006
    • Integration of a European team in the global product development cycle

oMarketing: focus on customer acquisition through direct marketing programs

·  Break-even was achieved in 2007 and profitability in 2008

o   Restructuring program in early 2007 with layoffs representing 10% of the workforce

Other responsibilities:

·Fully responsible for the annual budgeting process and expenditures control

·Spokesperson for the company in Europe

·Supervised four branded retail stores (Chamonix, Munich, Dublin, Milan)

·Negotiated and completed the change of logistics’ providers in 2006

Sep 2001 - Feb 2004

Sales and Marketing Director

Patagonia Europe

Starting in the newly created position of Marketing director, I was promoted to Sales and Marketing director a year later. My main responsibilities were:

  • Build and execute the marketing plan for Europe (€1.7M)
  • Re-organize the sales and marketing teams to shift focus on sales and improve efficiency
  • Grow sales and maintain margin
  • Managed team of 15 employees and 15 sales agents 

Some achievements

·Achieved sales of €19M (+8%) with 700 dealers

·Team re-organization

  • Outsourced of the merchandising activities
  • Organized the European sales management around two area managers
  • Changed the Austrian, Swedish and Spanish sales agents
  • Replaced the UK and Benelux sales agents by in-house sales representatives

·Increased significantly PR activities by hiring PR agencies in Italy and the UK

·Created a preferred sales program for professionals which generated K€300 in revenue

·Developed a more direct marketing approach, in particular with catalog mailing

Other responsibilities

·Built a new team of sponsored athletes

·Adapted and built European specific communication tools (Catalog, Pop, ads...)

·Dealt directly with some major European Key accounts (Bever, Snow & rock, Transa...)

Feb 1993 - Mar 2001

General Manager-Lafuma America Inc.


1997-2001Lafuma America Inc, USA – General manager

·Created and managed the North American subsidiary (8 employees)

·100% growth over three years reaching $8.5M in sales

1995 - 1997Millet SA, France - Export Manager (Millet) and Asia Area Manager (Lafuma)

·Developed export sales worldwide (€8M with 8 agents, 5 distributors)

·Established “Lafuma Japan” as a joint-venture

1993 - 1995Lafuma SA, France - Export Sales Executive

·Build-up export sales in Europe and in the USA 


Aug 1990 - Aug 1991


State University of New York at Buffalo


15 years of management and sales experience in the sporting goods industry

Performed in an international business environment

- General management: built, lead and managed mid-size international teams, restructured organization, handled budgeting process, assumed P&L responsibility, developed business plans, performed public speeches

- International sales development: chose distribution network, built sales organization, grew direct sales (e-commerce, branded stores), managed operational marketing

- People skills: lead and motivated employees across challenging business cycles


Passion for the mountains: backcountry and couloir skiing, paragliding, alpinism and mountain biking Green house building President/initiator of the EOG AFC (European Outdoor Group, Association for Conservation)2005/2007