Case Study Essay

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9- 11-020 -7 REV: OCTOBER 19, 2010 FOREST REINHARDT RAMON CASADESUS-MASANELL HYUN JIN KIM Patagonia [Patagonia] is business conducted upside down and inside-out. Everything about it flies i the face of in ical. consultants’ recommendations about How to Maximize Profits and Cut Costs. Simply put, it’s radi — Fortun Magazine1 ne ou It’s okay to be eccentric, as long as yo are rich; otherwise you’re just crazy. — Yvon Chouinard, Founder of Pat tagonia, Inc.2 In the spring of 2010, Casey She eahan, CEO of Patagonia, and senior executives wer in intense re discussions about the future of the co ompany. They were wrestling with the challenge of im mplementing a new, radical environmental initiativ that was at the forefront of their…show more content…
As demand for his gear grew, the back-of-the-car operation eventually transformed into Chouinard Equipment. In 1966, Chouinard set up shop in Ventura, California, for its proximity to surf breaks, and began a partnership with his peer climbers, Tom and Doreen Frost.11 Chouinard Equipment became the largest supplier of climbing hardware in the United States by 1970, but as Chouinard recalled, “None of us saw the business as an end in itself. It was just a way to pay the bills so we could go off on climbing trips.”12 Tom and Doreen would work while Chouinard took six months surfing down the west coast of the Americas, skiing in Chile, and climbing in Argentina. In return, the next year, Chouinard would watch the business while Tom climbed the peaks in the Himalayas.13 Patagonia’s Early Years In 1972, Chouinard Equipment added an apparel line named “Patagonia” after a mountainous region in Chile and Argentina. Soon after, Chouinard’s partnership with the Frosts came to an end. Patagonia was established as its own company in 1979, and Kristine McDivitt Tompkins, an avid skiracer and fellow “dirtbag,” was appointed its first CEO. Lost Arrow Corporation was created in 1984 as a parent company for Chouinard’s businesses.14 During the 1980s, while Chouinard Equipment experienced legal trouble and was eventually sold, Patagonia grew its sales from
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