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Billabong Europe adds new sales & product team

Jean Kress & Nicolas Burger © Billabong



Industry Updates

Jean Kress now Head of Product & Merchandising

Nicolas Burger the new Sales Manager

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 21 July, 2014 - Billabong Europe is please to announce Jean Kress as Head of merchandising and Design for Europe and Nicolas Burger as Sales Manager Europe. Both Jean and Nicolas will work out of the head office in Hossegor and report to Jean-Louis (JL) Rodrigues, General Manager Billabong Europe. 

"Both Jean and Nicolas bring extensive experience in action sports and the ability to drive sales, distribution and product innovation in a multi channel environment," said Rodrigues. "They add exceptional talent and passion to the GSM group executive team and I am looking forward to working with them as we lead Billabong's Europe next phase of growth in Europe."

Jean Kress will be overseeing Billabong Europe’s design and development team and be responsible for creating an innovative product range that is both on trend and that respects Billabong’s heritage and values. 

“I’m really excited because Billabong is an amazing brand and one that perfectly represents my personal values,” Jean Kress said. “It is a great opportunity to collaborate with Billabong in Australia and USA to help build an innovative global range of products. Surfing has been in  my blood since I was a teenager and I'm so stoked to join JL Rodriguez and his team to create products that reflect my passions for sport, fashion and the environment.” 

Jean Kress bring more than 20 years of action sports and fashion design experience to Billabong Europe. He started with Quiksilver in 1999 and spent 15 years at the company as Design Manager for Europe overseeing all the men’s, women’s, accessories and kid's collections. 

Jean will work alongside the new Sales Manager for Europe Nicolas Burger. Burger will be responsible for defining and executing the Billabong sales strategy in the region that will deliver long term growth and added profitability to the brand through increasing brand presence and visibility across all channels.

“Billabong is an amazing brand with a long history and a unique connection to surf, fashion and action sports,” said Burger. “Our main goal is to stabilize our business in Europe. Our Retail division is leading the way with a 10% growth last year in Europe. I will actively work to reinforce our "Go To Market" integration, both internally by working very closely with our Product, Marketing & Retail divisions and externally by strengthening our collaboration with our main partners in Europe. The ultimate goal is to take the brand to the next level at retail.”

Burger was most recently Fox Europe’s Head of Sales for EMEA. He designed an implemented their Sales Strategy, which covered more than 30 countries. He also successfully introduced a new Selective Distribution Model across the key Lifestyle, Motocross and Mountain Bike categories. Before Fox he gained a decade of sales experience with Nike, with titles including Action Sports/Go To Market Sales Manager (CEE) and the Sport Performance Sales Manager in Russia.

“JL is putting together a really powerful team in Europe and we are extremely excited to have Jean and Nicolas join the Billabong team,” said Shannan North, Global Billabong Brand President. “It is testament to the brand, vision and culture that we can attract such amazing talent.”

John Kress, Nicolas Burger, Billabong Europe, Business Updates, Industry
Helene Kalmes

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