Bonobos co-founder returns to company after Walmart sale

Andy Dunn is the co-founder of Bonobos  (Image courtesy Brian McConkey).
Andy Dunn is the co-founder of Bonobos (Image courtesy Brian McConkey).

Andy Dunn is returning to Bonobos, which is now under new ownership.

Dunn, who co-founded the digitally native menswear brand in 2007, will join WHP Global in an advisory role for Bonobos. The brand management firm and Express, Inc. (EXPR)  acquired Bonobos from Walmart in a $75 million deal that was completed in May. It marked the first acquisition to be made jointly by the two companies since they completed their strategic partnership earlier this year, which included WHP buying a 60% stake in the Express brand.

Dunn served as the CEO of Bonobos for its first ten years.  In 2017, the company was sold to Walmart for $310 million in cash. Dunn left Bonobos in early 2020.

According to a WHP release, Dunn and WHP Global will work in partnership with Tim Baxter, the CEO of EXPR, John Hutchinson, president of Bonobos, and the entire Bonobos team to help drive the future of the brand.

 “As the co-founder of Bonobos and a retail innovator, Andy has a unique perspective that we are fortunate to have access to as we work with WHP Global to begin the next chapter of growth for Bonobos,” said Baxter.

Bonobos, a pioneer of the direct-to-consumer movement, was founded as an online retailer. But it expanded into brick-and-mortar, opening showroom-style stores (“guideshops”) where customers can try on the clothes and order them online. 

“The future of the Bonobos brand is incredibly exciting as we welcome back Andy Dunn and focus on activating the brand’s potential by leveraging the combined platforms of WHP Global and EXPR,” said Yehuda Shmidman, CEO and chairman of WHP Global. “With Andy Dunn’s extensive expertise and unwavering passion for the brand, we are confident that he will play a vital role in guiding the Bonobos brand through its next phase of growth.”

Last year, Dunn released a memoir titled Burn Rate: Launching a Startup and Losing My Mind, revealing his previously hidden journey with bipolar. Dunn is now the founder and CEO of Pie, a new social app designed to bring people together in real life.

As an angel and VC investor at Red Swan Ventures, he has backed more than 120 startups, including Warby Parker and Coinbase.

“Getting back into the mix at Bonobos is a magical, full-circle moment,” said Dunn. “Yehuda, Tim and the teams at WHP Global and EXPR are wonderful people and will be exceptional brand stewards. In partnership with John and the strong leadership team at Bonobos, we’re going to do great things on behalf of current and future Bonobos customers.”


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