Rapha founder Simon Mottram is to step down as CEO at the end of this year after 17 years in the role, CyclingTips reports.
In an email to industry members, Mottram said he would ‘remain very close’ to the brand and will continue to serve on the Rapha board of directors and continue to play a role as founder. “I am convinced that it is the right time for me to step down and for Rapha to have a new CEO with the skills and experience to take advantage of the huge opportunity Rapha faces,” he said.
Former CEO of fashion brand AllSaints William Kim is set to replace Mottram from the start of 2022. Kim has also had roles at Gucci, Burberry, and Abercrombie & Fitch, and was executive vice president of global retail and digital commerce at Samsung Mobile.
Mottram founded Rapha in London in 2004 in response to the lack of high-quality clothing and creative brands available to road cyclists at the time. Before founding Rapha, he spent 15 years as a branding and marketing consultant, advising brands all over the world, and he is also a qualified chartered accountant.
The Rapha Cycling Club was founded in 2015 to bring cyclists together, and today there are already more than 17,000 members worldwide. Its 21 Clubhouses across Europe, North America and Asia have become hubs for RCC members and local cyclists.
Rapha was title sponsor to the British UCI Continental team Rapha-Condor from 2005 to 2012, and was clothing supplier to Team Sky from 2012 to 2016. The comopany continues to work at the top tiers of professional cycling with the women’s UCI WorldTour team CANYON//SRAM since 2016, and, after publishing a two-year study on the state of the sport titled the Rapha Roadmap, returned to the men’s WorldTour with EF Education First Pro Cycling from 2019.
Earlier this year, the Rapha Foundation partnered with British Cycling to tackle inequality in cycling and empower more communities to create their own champions of cycling. The partnership, which has taken the form of British Cycling City Academies Supported by Rapha Foundation, will help to improve the gender balance, increase involvement from diverse ethnic communities and encourage greater engagement with young people from lower socioeconomic backgrounds.
The project is part of Rapha’s commitment to further fund, develop and represent a more diverse cycling community around the world, with 60% of the Rapha Foundation’s annual $1.5 million funding going towards supporting BAME and female-focused programmes and initiatives.