California-based outdoor apparel manufacturer Patagonia has named Matthijs Visch as its new general manager of EMEA.
Visch joins Patagonia in May 2021 and will oversee the brand’s business in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, which currently includes more than 230 employees and 11 standalone stores.
In a statement, Patagonia said that Visch will “build on the success and strong environmental position” established by previous general manager Ryan Gellert, who has transitioned into the role of global chief executive of holding company Patagonia Works, after six years of leading Patagonia’s team in EMEA.
Visch will be based in the company’s Amsterdam-based EMEA headquarters and will report to John Collins, vice president of global sales.
Collins said in a statement: “Meeting Matthijs, I was impressed by his compassionate, authentic approach to leadership and team-building. He has lived all over the world and brings rich experiences and diverse perspectives to his work.
“He is a trail runner and skier, shares Patagonia’s commitment to protecting the wild places around us and brings with him a dedication to social justice. As we continue to grow our business and our environmental activism, throughout the EMEA region, I feel confident that Matthijs is the right person to lead the business and our people on the journey ahead.”
Visch joins from Nike, where he spent 19 years, most recently as general manager of EMEA East.
Commenting on his new role, Visch added: “It is a humbling experience to be joining Patagonia, a company I have long admired, and to become part of this dynamic community. Throughout my career, I have made it a priority to empower the individuals I work with, in order to achieve great things, collectively.
“In my new role, I look forward to building on this important work. From a very young age, I have felt most at home in nature, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help to bring to life the mission statement: We’re in business to save our home planet.”