Lars Gullikson, Silva's chief executive for the last 13 years, has left the Swedish maker of outdoor lamps, compasses and accessories after its sale to Karnell in July. The Swedish investment fund has yet to find another chief executive but it has appointed several heavyweights from the outdoor industry to Silva's board.
As hinted by The Compass before, the new board members include Mats Hedblom, the former chief executive of Haglöfs. He is already a board member of Kasthall, another company in which Karnell has invested, specializing in carpets. Another new board member at Silva is Anders Reuthammar, who has a long track record of leading sports-related companies, from Intersport Sweden to Monark Crescent – and most recently Marbodal, which specializes in kitchens.
He is joined by Staffan Simberg, who comes from Nokia, and Claess Andersson, the buying director at ICA, a Swedish retailer, formerly at Nike and sales manager at Silva. Two representatives of Karnell, Patrik Rignell and Hans Karlander, have been appointed to the Silva board as well, with Rignell as chairman.
Karnell bought Silva from Fiskars, which owned the Swedish brand for only five years. The Finnish company, which already owned the Gerber brand of outdoor knives, wanted to trim its assortment of brands and froze the investments required to fully integrate Silva and Gerber.
Rignell said Karnell wanted to build Silva into a more focused independent supplier of outdoor equipment, now that is was rid of extra tasks such as distributing Gerber. It will continue to focus on compasses and lights for the time being, but other categories could be added in the coming years. Silva's turnover as a standalone brand should be roughly flat at about €15 million this year.