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New CEO of SPORT-MASTER

Aug 16, 2013

Jens Høgsted will join SPORT-MASTER as CEO on September 1, 2013 and will thereby replace Hans-Peter Rasmussen who will continue as a board member.

SPORT-MASTER is Denmark's leading chain of sporting goods retailer which was acquired in 2012 by the private equity fund Nordic Capital Fund VII. In connection with the acquisition, SPORT-MASTER was transformed from a voluntary chain of independent stores into an integrated capital chain. SPORT-MASTER has since then entered on an exciting journey with the purpose of further strengthening the company's leading place in the market and to be the customers' first choice, both when it comes to stores and online shopping. To this end, business processes, cooperation with suppliers, organisation and culture will all be aligned to the new reality facing a retail business and to the customers' increasing demands.

Hans-Peter Rasmussen has as CEO been instrumental in transforming SPORT-MASTER into an integrated capital chain, but has, in consultation with the board, chosen to hand over the baton to Jens Høgsted who will join as the new CEO on September 1 to continue SPORT-MASTER's journey. Hans-Peter Rasmussen's great knowledge and industry network will continue to be an asset for SPORT-MASTER, as he will transition to the board.

Jens Høgsted is 41 years old and has a solid insight into retail businesses after almost 20 years as a Management Consultant, where he advised leading consumer brands and retail chains in Europe. In the past 11 years Jens has been co-founder and partner in the consultancy firm Quartz+Co which is one of the leading Nordic management consultancy companies.

The top management team will, beside Jens Høgsted, also be strengthened by Chris Bigler as the new CFO. Chris will join shortly following Jens from a position as CFO in IC Companys.

Michael Haaning, Chairman of the board of SPORT-MASTER and Principal, NC Advisory A/S, advisor to the Nordic Capital Funds, says: "It is in every aspect a radical process to transform a voluntary chain of independent stores into an integrated capital chain, and on top of that there are increasing demands on tomorrow's retail businesses. SPORT-MASTER is already in the process of creating its new platform, but we want to further accelerate this process and make it more effective.  Hans-Peter Rasmussen has had a significant role, from creating the idea of transforming SPORT-MASTER into a capital chain, to making it happen, and on behalf of the board I would like to thank him for his great contribution. I am very pleased that Hans-Peter Rasmussen will become a board member so we can continue to benefit from his great knowledge and expertise within the retail and sporting goods sector.

The board is very happy to welcome Jens Høgsted as CEO. Jens is very analytical and has unique experience from almost 20 years' of advising the best retail and consumer goods companies, thereby having detailed insight into strategic and operational aspects, as well as a solid understanding of the interesting challenges and opportunities that exist for SPORT-MASTER."

Jens Høgsted states: "I believe that the sporting goods industry is the most exciting business I can think of: It has a mix of great products, exciting brands, talented people, increasing demand of the store experience and service, and you have to be able to execute a powerful concept - all centred around important life style themes such as health, active leisure time, being together and having fun. Simultaneously it is one of those businesses where the online market most significantly will change the game. When I look at SPORT-MASTER it is clear that we are the ones with the best capability to fulfil the high ambitions and demands from our customers and to lead the development of this sector. When you put it all together it is the dream job I could not refuse."

Hans-Peter Rasmussen explains that he is proud of passing on the baton: "I believe that we have created a strong starting point to win the game of sporting goods suppliers in Denmark - physically as well as online. At the same time, the new setup makes room for new competencies. I am therefore very proud to pass on the baton to Jens, whom I am sure has the right profile to execute the plans and strategies for SPORT-MASTER, and I look forward to a continued active part as a board member".

A joint reception will be held in SPORT-MASTER's office, Baltorpbakken 5-7, DK-2750 Ballerup on September 5 at 2 p.m.

For further information, please contact:

Michael Haaning

Chairman of the Board, SPORT-MASTER and
Principal, NC Advisory A/S, advisor to the Nordic Capital Funds
+45 33 44 77 50
Michael.Haaning@nordiccapital.com

About SPORT-MASTER
For more than 30 years, SPORT-MASTER has worked focused to gain the market leading position it holds today. With more than 100 stores, SPORT-MASTER is not only Denmark's largest sporting goods retailer, but also the most popular among the Danes. Besides the stores, SPORT-MASTER offers a fast growing internet store and customer loyalty club, whereby customers can connect whenever and wherever. The company employs more than 1,000 people dedicated to sport. In 2012 SPORT-MASTER was acquired by Nordic Capital Fund VII.

Additional information about SPORT-MASTER is available at www.sportmaster.dk

 

 

 

About Nordic Capital Private Equity Funds

Since the start in 1989, Nordic Capital Private Equity Funds have invested in large and medium sized companies, primarily in Northern Europe. Through committed ownership and by targeting strategic development and operational improvements, Nordic Capital creates value in its investments. The funds invest in companies in Northern Europe and in selected investment opportunities internationally. They are based in Jersey, Channel Islands, and are advised by the NC Advisory companies in Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany and the UK. Additional information about Nordic Capital is available through its corporate website, www.nordiccapital.com

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