Farewell from Jaimie

17 January 2019 Comments 61

This will be the last of my Watercooler blogs on the SKINS website.

I am devastated to announce that today SKINS has filed for bankruptcy with the Swiss Court. A Trustee will be appointed to assume responsibility for the company with almost immediate effect.

My management team and I have left no stone unturned in an effort to avoid this. I apologise unreservedly to all those affected by it.

I am enormously regretful and sad that it has got to this point. Even as late as yesterday, it looked like there was an option for avoiding this action but events conspired against us and left us with no option at all.

SKINS as a brand will not disappear; the brand will merely change ownership; and those of you who love and already wear SKINS will still be able to buy the products.

SKINS is a genuine pacesetter. We led the creation and manufacture of sports compression wear, and we pride ourselves on continuing to lead the sports performance category in terms of innovation and performance.

I bought into SKINS about 17 years ago because I wanted to get into sport. I was so thrilled to be owning a brand where they not only made something innovative, bold and ambitious – garments that improve sports performance and aid recovery – but it was also an opportunity to do and contribute to something ‘bigger’, and help make sport better.

Our entire brand positioning was around ‘changing the world through sport’.

It is what we set out to do; to help level the playing field on-and-off the field through championing important issues and holding sport to account for being everything we love about it – competitive, fair, based on teamwork and good sportsmanship, dedication, commitment, integrity. They were all traits that were – and are – important to us.

We worked to help bring sport back to its basic tenets, fuelled by the spirit of pure competition. As a brand, we wanted to make a difference, and we like to think that we have.

So the question you’re probably pondering is how did it get to this.

It’s a fair question, and I can’t point to one thing and one thing alone. There have been many contributing factors, as well as mistakes I’ve made along the way. I’ve been open about some of those mistakes and I will not recount all of them, but they have nonetheless compounded one upon the other to get to this point.

Roll-on effect of GFC

What has brought us to this point really started 11 years ago. When the global financial crisis (GFC) hit in 2008, I sold a portion of SKINS to a private equity firm. I also made a lousy deal.

When the GFC was over, I had to get out of the private equity arrangement. To do so, we borrowed heavily, and with the help of a Japanese partner we managed to buy out the private equity shareholders.

To my enormous regret, those borrowings have become unsustainable and while we have been working for some time now to try to avoid what is happening today, in the end there was no choice.

Making a difference

During this 17 years, SKINS has been proud to stand-up for sports people and the ideals of sport too.

We helped change world cycling governance.

We helped bring attention to the issue of drugs in sport, and how sport should deal with it.

We highlighted the hypocrisy of FIFA’s sponsors in supporting a World Cup that would be built on the back of migrant labour.

We helped call out the dodgy decisions of FIFA, long before the FIFA arrests.

We helped bring greater awareness of homophobia in sport through our #RainbowLaces campaign in Australia.

We helped champion greater gender equity in sport, and focus attention on the importance of fans as people, not just ‘metrics’.

When others were not willing to hold a light to organisations such as the IOC, WADA, FIFA, the UCI and the IAAF, or the people who wield power inside them, we did.

We made a lot of enemies. And also a lot of friends.

Everyone at SKINS has been enormously proud of our work in these and other areas.

Thank you

Throughout all of this, I also had the honour and privilege to meet some wonderful people. My team and I have enjoyed working with them. Sports people, journalists, whistleblowers, MPs, academics and social change activists.

I want to pay tribute to the staff and partners of SKINS around the world who have worked diligently, astutely, loyally, tirelessly to bring the SKINS brand to life in every way.

They are a fantastic team, all of whom I have loved having as part of the SKINS family.

I thank you all from the bottom of my heart, and wish you all the best for your futures. I am so, so sorry that this has happened and am simply devastated.

Please be assured that I have tried everything possible to avoid having to take this action today. Absolutely everything.

In sporting terms, I left nothing out on the park.

Thank you again to everyone who has bought SKINS, enjoyed wearing SKINS, worked with SKINS, and supported SKINS.

*  *  *

If you want to stay in touch, please do so via Twitter: @jaimiefuller

61 comments on "Farewell from Jaimie"

  1. Mahesh Patel on 17 January 2019

    Thank you for notice, I can but simply wish you all the very best of wishes in all of your future endeavours. It’s a real shame to see the Company undergoe difficult times knowing you’ve a wonderful product and brand name of clothing.

    My best wishes, Mahesh Patel

  2. Jock Campbell on 17 January 2019

    I am shattered for you Jaimie. I will never forget what you and Skins have done for us at Jock Athletic, not for me personally. Thanks for everything

  3. Yuri van Gils on 17 January 2019

    Hi Jaimie,

    Sorry to read that things didn’t work out for you and your team.
    Hopefully this doesn’t mean you will give up as this adventure brought you all a lot of knowledge and wisdom. I’m sure in the near future you wil come
    back 10x stronger!
    As a huge fan I hereby wish all of you @ SKINS the best of luck.

    Yuri van Gils

  4. Trudi du Toit, Sports Trader on 17 January 2019

    So sad for you and the brand, Jaimie. Am I correct that you will soon be championing another cause? Once an activist, always an activist.

  5. Joe decker on 17 January 2019

    Jaimie
    Truly sorry to here this news. Best product in its class for sure
    Best of luck in the future for you and your family
    Joe Decker

  6. Guy Pease on 17 January 2019

    Life has its ups and downs for ALL of us. You’ve had more ups through SKINS than most of us have in a lifetime, and you can be proud indeed of the battles you’ve fought — very publicly and bravely. I enjoyed re-acting with you on Ball Tampering and All That, and you can rest easy that ‘you’ve made a difference’ in areas where others have feared to tread. ‘Happy Retirement’? I doubt it…………….You’ll be off in some other direction before too long, and I hope it brings you and others good fortune.

  7. James Bond on 17 January 2019

    Tu vas rebondir comme un basketteur

  8. Michael M on 17 January 2019

    My sympathies and best wishes to you, Jaimie. I’m sure you will continue to do great things.

  9. Leo on 17 January 2019

    Thanks for having some balls

  10. John Quinn on 17 January 2019

    Jaimie,
    Devastated for you mate. Make no mistake though – you have made an enormous difference to so many people and organisations around the world through SKINS and your own ideals, morals and values. Thanks you. Stay strong. John Quinn

  11. Elizabeth on 17 January 2019

    Really impressed with such an authentic and honest account of what happened Jamie. It sounds as though you and your team did your very best, and have learnt a lot. Just what life is about! Wishing you and your crew all the very best for the future! Hold on to the good memories.

  12. Tony M on 17 January 2019

    So sorry to hear this Jaimie. All the best to everyone at SKINS and to you and your family. And thank you for championing so many good causes, and supporting good people.

  13. Peter Robertson on 17 January 2019

    As I read this I’m wearing my 400 series skins, post gym workout. In my view its the best compression gear in the market. Your business has had a massively positive effect on so many lives. Thank you and well done. Sorry to hear the financial management hasn’t gone as well but as the old saying goes – You either win or you learn. Hindsights a wonderful thing. I’m sure you will take the lessons forward and come back stronger. Just don’t stay down. Get back up. The world needs people like you to make a difference and to keep going. Fall forwards, not backwards.
    Good luck.

  14. P de Lacy on 17 January 2019

    What a shame! Your products are by far the best and I was just looking to replace a well used set of A400s. No doubt someone will pick up the brand and products out of bankruptcy. But I’m sorry for you, your colleagues and families. Hope life throws you a better pitch next time around.

  15. Hodgie on 17 January 2019

    Hey Jai,
    I was early years at start of interesting journey and sad to hear about inauspicious end.
    It was a hoot during my 8-9 years and enjoyable spectating the latter.
    Best wishes to you, Jai.

    Hodgie

  16. Francesco Cordua on 17 January 2019

    Jaimie – you are an inspirational leader. Skins and the many loyal fans empowered by the innovation your brand championed will always be with you, and your advocacy for fairness and elevation of sportsmanship will remain a part of your lasting legacy. I look forward to watching you succeed again in whatever way you elect to move forward! Continued Success – F

  17. Barry Newman on 17 January 2019

    Jaimie
    I think all of us at Skins and all of those who have worked with in the past will feel your pain as I think we all shared the passion that you have shown from the beginning.
    I personally thank you for the journey we travelled together. It sure was a fantastic trip. To you and all the family I wish you all the best in what ever comes your way. I think I still stand as the only one you never actually got to give me a nickname.

  18. Kevin Curtis on 17 January 2019

    Jaimie, this is sad news, I have loved the product and the company. You stood up to the things that are ruining sports and that took a lot of courage. The best compression clothing I have ever had and my go to gear.
    I wish you all the best , keep up the fight and thank you.
    Kevin

  19. Bruce Southgate on 17 January 2019

    Billy
    Sad news indeed, however ss part of the team who have enjoyed the ride from your initial involvement with Skins, we at Cactus wish you and the family well on your next exciting adventure.

  20. Brenton Hartfield on 17 January 2019

    Hi Jaimie,
    I am devastated for you & all at Skins. This must be absolutely gut wrenching for you & I honestly feel overwhelmed by this news.
    Thank you so much for the energy & drive you put into establishing the Skins brand across many markets.
    Conversely, the Jaimie Fuller I know will regroup & continue to achieve on many fronts & I look forward to future updates……as the old saying goes “You might get knocked down 8 times but you get up 9”.
    Thanks so much for allowing us to be part of the journey. Skins is a fantastic brand.
    Best regards
    Brenton (Direct One WA)
    PS: JK also passes on his very best wishes.

  21. Ann on 17 January 2019

    Really sorry to read this and thank you for the detailed explanation. Wishing you and team the best of luck. You all have a great deal to be proud of.

  22. Ya Ding on 17 January 2019

    I want to cry.

  23. Lasha on 18 January 2019

    Jaimie,
    I’m sorry to hear this… very sad…

  24. Daniel Herbert on 18 January 2019

    So sorry to hear this Jamie. I love what you did and how you did it, you made a real difference in many people’s lives through your business and social conscience. I remember my time with Skins very fondly and I hope whoever continues the brand has the same energy and passion as you. Take care and look forward to seeing your next chapter.

  25. Ian Winters on 18 January 2019

    Good to see you are keeping up the family tradition of leaving bad debts – your dad your brother and now you

  26. Shep on 18 January 2019

    You can be very proud of what you created mate. On to the next adventure.

  27. Pup Mufasa on 18 January 2019

    Well dang I am very sorry to hear this you made a product that fit me and when your built like a tank its hard to come by. Good Luck you’ll be back its in your soul , take a rest and join us back on the scrum.
    Pup

  28. Paul Kenny on 18 January 2019

    Sad news. SKINS will live on. I wear mine almost daily. I wish you all the best for your future. Something bigger and better is always around the corner!! 🙂 Paul.

  29. Peter Cernic, Slovenia on 18 January 2019

    Jamie,
    You created the best sport EQUIPMENT NOT CLOTHING!
    SKINS RULZ!
    To you and all the family, I wish you all the best in the future.
    Peter #1
    Barjetling Academy

  30. Rudy Alleyn on 19 January 2019

    Je suis triste d’apprendre cette nouvelle.

    J’espère pouvoir continuer à compter sur cette marque que j’utilise depuis 5 ans.

    J’espère aussi retrouver les mêmes conditions pour les membres de notre club avec le repreneur.

    Merci d’avoir pu pratiquer mon sport, Running & Trail avec la marque SKINS.

  31. Peter-Arnold Holz on 19 January 2019

    Hallo Jaimie….
    es macht mich traurig, dass eine wertvolle Marke wie SKINS so endet…
    Ich habe SKINS immer gerne getragen und SKINS hat mich durch meinen Sport getragen…
    Ich werde meine SKINS solange tragen, wie es eben geht und hoffe, SKINS noch lange bei anderen Sportlern sehen zu können…
    Ich wünsche dir und deinem Team alles erdenklich Gute.. farewell und solong…..

  32. Keyhani Sarvi on 19 January 2019

    Extremely sad to read this. Isn’t there any way? Wish you the best going forward and I do hope the brand continues to live and to offer the same quality!

  33. Paul Higgins on 19 January 2019

    Hi Jamie, im very sad for you and your team. Congratulations on building a truly global brand!

  34. Federica Oradini on 19 January 2019

    Hi Jamie, I am gutted to say the least. I am so sorry. Skins is by far and without any doubt the best product in its class. Thank you for everything you have worked hard for and achieved. I truly hope you can back stronger. I wish you all the best

  35. Molly Clark on 20 January 2019

    Hey Jamie

    So sad to hear that Skins will change ownership. Will the new owner carry forward your vision and will you have an input ?

    If not what a shame
    I discovered skins 3 years ago and my life has never been the same and I genuinely am devastated to think what this will do to my running regime

  36. B.A.Printa on 21 January 2019

    Craft , Focus now Skins

  37. Pingback: Skins becomes latest victim of struggling retail sectorAthletic wear brand Skins has filed for bankruptcy. Picture: Instagram @skinssportswear – The Australia Times

  38. Honest Bob on 21 January 2019

    Never heard of SKINS. Maybe I’m the problem? Good luck Jaimie. Next time will be better…

  39. Pingback: Sportswear company Skins files for bankruptcy – Webz Site

  40. Kelly on 22 January 2019

    This is such devastating news – really sorry to hear this and must be incredible hard going through all this as the creator of Skins. I hope Skins will still stay true to its vision even after it changes ownership. All the Jaimie.

  41. Pingback: Skins: Australian sportswear company files for bankruptcy - NEWS.com.au - Moey.me

  42. CRaig on 22 January 2019

    Genuinely sorry to hear this. I have always loved the skins brand and what it stood for. I wish you the very best of luck for the future.

  43. CSC RIVAT laloy csc rivat on 24 January 2019

    Bonjour Jaimie,
    Nous sommes désolé pour vous. Sachez que nous avons été heureux de travailler avec vous au développement de l’image de cette belle marque. Nous vous souhaitons de nouvelles belles aventures, bonne chance Jaimie.
    Philippe et Guilene Annecy

  44. Tristran. on 27 January 2019

    Everyone, who makes some tights, calls its garment “compression”. “Compression” is “in”. SKINS has played a pioneering or leading role in this. I have enjoyed your garment for many years now and it is sad that it has come to this point but “the end” is always a beginning too. There is a market for affordable, quality and true compression garment. Don’t give up ! Make something new. I will certainly buy it. Thanks guys for all your hard work ! Tristran.

  45. Pingback: Skins: Australian sportswear company files for bankruptcy – NEWS.com.au – SWDS

  46. Lan Naas on 28 January 2019

    I’m so sad 😞 I love SKINS ❤️

  47. Jesús Rincón on 30 January 2019

    Thank you very much Jaime for everything you’ve done for Skins.
    Hopefully everything goes well and soon you will be back with Skins. I love Skins.
    Good luck and lots of encouragement.

  48. Mars on 5 February 2019

    I weared it approx. since beginning and I do not want to Change!

  49. ars on 5 February 2019

    I weard it since the beginning and I do not want to change

  50. James Mathie on 6 February 2019

    Very sad to hear this news. It has been a pleasure to work with Jaimie and his team to help clean up football. The world would be a far greater place if there were more people like Jaimie and more companies that went about their business like SKINs. Good luck to all in future endeavors and I hope our paths meet again.