It was very exciting to join (Skullcandy, Inc.) when it was little more than an idea and a dream, and to be part of growing it into one of the world's most popular consumer audio brands. —Jeremy Andrus
PARK CITY — Skullcandy, Inc. announced Thursday that President and CEO Jeremy Andrus has decided to step down from the Park City-based company to join a private investment firm.
He will serve as a consultant to Skullcandy over the next 12 months while the board of directors initiates a search for a permanent replacement. Until then, the company's founder and former CEO Rick Alden will serve as interim CEO.
Andrus, 41, became president in 2005 and was part of the company’s growth from a fledgling retail audio products firm with about $1 million in annual sales to nearly $300 million last year.
“Being part of building Skullcandy over the eight years has been the greatest ride of my career,” Andrus said. “It was very exciting to join the company when it was little more than an idea and a dream, and to be part of growing it into one of the world's most popular consumer audio brands.”
Andrus is leaving to take a position with Solamere Capital, a Boston-based private equity firm that was co-founded by Tagg Romney — son of former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
He said that he hoped to parlay the expertise he gained while at Skullcandy into building another small business into a prosperous enterprise.
“To create rapid growth and build the infrastructure and platforms that will allow (a small business) to win over time,” he said.
He commented that he would work with Solamere leaders to determine the best fit for his expertise in finding a company for him to operate in the Rocky Mountain region.
Having previously worked in the hotel industry with Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants — which owns properties such as the Hotel Monaco in downtown Salt Lake City, Andrus said he is looking forward to a “new adventure” in what could be yet another foray into an unfamiliar business sector similar to when he joined Skullcandy with no previous related experience.
“That transition was a very different opportunity,” he explained. “That was a real career change for me and part of what I loved was the opportunity to learn.”
He said that he gained great confidence in his ability to run a business from that experience — an attribute that should serve him well in his new environment.
“I feel comfortable (managing and building a business) … likely in a different industry,” Andrus said.
As for Skullcandy, the company will move forward under new “old” leadership in its founder Alden. He founded Skullcandy in January 2003 and served as CEO until March 2011.
"This company has been my life since founding it and I'm excited to come back in as we enter our second decade,” Alden said. “Jeremy has helped create a world-class operation and his leadership has resulted in numerous awards and recognition from our industry and customers for excellence in supply chain, sourcing, manufacturing, product development and logistics."
Skullcandy Chairman Jeff Kearl also praised Andrus for his significant contributions to Skullcandy over the past eight years.
“Skullcandy would not be the company we are today without him and we wish him every success in his next endeavor," he said.