NOBULL is now under new ownership.
What’s happening: The performance apparel brand sold a majority stake to Impact Capital, the family office of BODYARMOR and Glaceau vitaminwater founder Mike Repole. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
NOBULL is currently navigating a transformation, broadening appeal from garage gym CrossFitter to sport-agnostic high-performer — all without losing its cool.
So far, its no-frills branding has translated well to extensions in footwear, swimwear, and performance apparel, with the brand reaching a $500M valuation and landing an undisclosed investment from the venture arm of the NFL late last year.
But, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing, as recently, the brand has hit a few growing pains.
In May, the company’s CMO Todd Meleney resigned, followed by a round of layoffs that cut 35% of the NOBULL’s workforce — the company said it was necessary to “safeguard the brand for the future” amid challenging economic conditions.
Interestingly, according to CNBC, Repole’s first unsolicited offer, made 14 months ago, was ignored. Now, taking him up on it, it’s possible the brand is recapitalizing to prep for sustained future growth, with Repole insisting an IPO is inevitable for the brand.
- After raising $400M for expansion in 2021, Vuori kicked off ecommerce operations across Europe, Australia, and Canada, with brick-and-mortar retail to follow.
- In June, no-frills men’s performance brand Ten Thousand raised $21.5M to scale up operations in the US.
- This July, Swiss performance running brand On secured a CHF 700 million ($796M) credit facility to support future growth.
Punchline: As Alo Yoga, HOKA, and others have proven alongside NOBULL, there’s room for “challenger” performance outfitters. But competing is a costly business.