Like this site? Help us to make it better.


Rapha boss steps down, joint managing directors appointed

William Kim leaves cycling clothing firm after 12 months in charge

Rapha chief executive William Kim is stepping down from his position as chief executive for personal reasons, with the North London-based upmarket cycling clothing brand appointing two joint managing directors to run the business.

Kim – who previously worked at the London-based retailer All Saints and at luxury goods firms Burberry and Gucci – joined Rapha at the end of last year, succeeding Simon Mottram, who founded the company in 2004, as chief executive.

> Rapha chief executive Simon Mottram to step down after 17 years

The company says that he will move back to his native Korea with his family, and has appointed long-standing employees Francois Convercey and Daniel Blumire as joint Managing Directors with immediate effect.

In a memorandum sent to Rapha staff on Monday, Kim said: “As you can imagine, this has been a very difficult decision for me to make.

“Over the last year, I’ve grown to love the Rapha brand. Rapha is an amazing business, made of great people and a unique culture, a tight-knit community. 

“You are each contributing to building a very special brand here at Rapha.  It has been a privilege to experience how magical cycling is and I know you will continue to thrive and lead the industry.”

In a joint statement released via Rapha, Convercey, formerly chief brand and marketing officer, and Blumire, who was chief commercial and product officer, said: “We are both equally passionate about the Rapha brand, our company culture and values.

“Rapha created a market and a benchmark for performance and style-forward cycling clothing, and is well positioned to continue to expand and inspire the world to live life by bike.”

Mottram, who sold a majority stake in the business in 2017 to an investment firm owned by Tom and Steuart Walton, grandsons of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, retains a shareholding in the business and will continue to sit on its board.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

Add new comment


Freddy56 | 1 year ago
1 like

Any accountants in the house?

Turnover up 30% but still making a loss of £7million.

Is this hiding money or a business that has Never turned a profit in its 12 years. Never!


open_roads replied to Freddy56 | 1 year ago
1 like

Depends what the strategy of the owners is.

If their strategy is to maximise investment in the business then it could well show a loss for a very long period. Without the detail behind EBITDA and borrowing it's impossible to tell.

As an analogy - compares to a company developing a car or a medicine. The up front investment can be considerable and sustained over many years - but at the point where no further investment is needed (product reaches market) the profit goes through the roof. 


TheBillder replied to open_roads | 1 year ago
1 like

You'd also need to look at things such as payments to other companies with the same owners in lower corporation tax jurisdictions. This can be used to eliminate UK profits and hence tax.

Do the Waltons own their stake directly from the farmstead on Walton Mountain, or is there a structure in between of offshore companies, trusts etc?

Rich_cb replied to TheBillder | 1 year ago

Double Irish with a Dutch Sandwich anyone?

Latest Comments