Oct 15, 2020 - Economy

Steph Korey steps down as Away's CEO (again)

Away founder Steph Korey (left) and co-founder Jen Rubio. Photo: Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Steph Korey, co-founder and the original CEO of smart luggage-maker Away, has turned the top job over to former Lululemon exec Stuart Haselden, who has been serving as co-CEO with Korey since January.

Why it matters: This caps a tumultuous year for Away, and not just because the pandemic has devastated hospitality and travel companies.

  • Korey originally stepped down as Away's CEO last December, after The Verge published a story that was critical of her leadership style, and former employees described a toxic work environment.
  • Just one month later she returned in a co-CEO role with Haselden, who had been recruited away from his COO role at Lululemon for a president role at Away. This was viewed as a trial run for becoming CEO.
  • In June the company raised new funding, below its previous $1.45 billion valuation. Shortly after, Haselden and Away co-founder Jenn Rubio told employees that Korey would relinquish her role by year-end

Korey, who has been publicly criticized media coverage of startups, will continue to serve on Away's board of directors.

The company also announced several other leadership changes, including the addition of one of Haselden's former Lululemon colleagues, Candan Erenguc, as chief supply chain officer and former Nike exec Catherine Dunleavy as CFO.

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