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Privacy Policy

Tremblant Capital ("Tremblant") does not disclose nonpublic personal information about our clients or former clients to third parties other than as described below.

Tremblant collects personal information about you in connection with our providing advisory services to you or in correspondence and conversations with Tremblant’s representatives. This information may include other information such as your:

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Intensity, Collaboration
& Respect

Our Team

Tremblant Capital brings together a cohesive team of accomplished professionals in a culture that emphasizes ownership within areas of expertise, and collaboration across areas of commonality. We employee a committee-based approach which enables a diversified review and analysis of our business. Internal Committees include Partners, Investment and Risk, Best Execution, Compliance, Valuation, ESG and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee.

Mr. Barakett, Chairman and CIO, focuses his time and energy on the investment process by heading the Investment/Risk Committee, interacting with the Sector PMs and dedicated Data Sciences group, and meeting with company management teams. Our experienced Investment team have been trained in Tremblant’s methodology and bring a nuanced understanding of their areas of specialization to the Firm. Mr. Eckert, President and COO, oversees all non-investment activities of the firm to ensure Tremblant Capital's institutional infrastructure provides support and operational stability for the investment process.

We have always been committed to cultivating and preserving a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion with our employees. We embrace and encourage our employees’ differences in age, color, disability, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, veteran status, and other characteristics that make our employees unique and bring a differentiated perspective. Diversity, equity and inclusion is a key component of our business strategy, allowing us to (1) attract and retain top talent from all talent pools and enable people to perform to their full potential and (2) to create greater innovation for our clients and our business through inclusion of different and various perspectives. Please find our Diversity & Inclusion Policy here.

Austin Stephen
Partner, Sector PM - Generalist

Austin Stephen

Partner, Sector PM - Generalist

2014-Present Tremblant Capital
2009-2012 Advent International | Private Equity Associate
2007-2009 Lehman Brothers | Investment Banking Analyst
2012-2014 Harvard Business School | MBA
2003-2006 Indiana University | BS, Finance/Accounting
Brett Barakett
Partner, Chairman & Chief Investment Officer

Brett Barakett

Partner, Chairman & Chief Investment Officer

Brett Barakett is the Chairman and Chief Investment Officer of Tremblant Capital, a global alternative asset management firm which focuses on public equity investments. In this capacity, he oversees the firm’s entire investment process spanning asset allocation, portfolio construction, and risk management.

Prior to founding Tremblant Capital in 2001, Mr. Barakett was a Portfolio Manager at Moore Capital Management, an Equity Analyst at Salomon Brothers, a Global Director at Reebok International, and a Brand Manager at Procter & Gamble. Mr. Barakett’s background first as an operating manager and then as an investment manager played a critical role in shaping Tremblant’s investment approach and process.

Mr. Barakett received MBA from the Harvard Business School and an HBA (Honors Business Administration) from the Ivey Business School at Western University.
Brian Rabin
Partner, Sector PM - Retail & Consumer & Co-Head of ESG Strategy

Brian Rabin

Partner, Sector PM - Retail & Consumer & Co-Head of ESG Strategy

2005-Present Tremblant Capital
2004-2005 Trisun Capital Inc. | Senior Analyst
2001-2004 Putnam Investment Management | Equity Analyst
1997-1999 EnTrust Capital Inc | Equity Analyst
1994-1997 Goldman, Sachs & Co. | Financial Analyst
1999-2001 Harvard Business School | MBA
1990-1994 Northwestern University | BA with honors, Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences & Economics
Bryan Walsh
Managing Director, Generalist

Bryan Walsh

Managing Director, Generalist

2018-Present Tremblant Capital
2016-2018 Bank of America Merrill Lynch | Investment Banking Analyst
2017 Marlowe Partners | Analyst, Intern
2013-2017 New York University, Stern School of Business | BS, Business
Caroline Kraft
Managing Director, Management Company Finance

Caroline Kraft

Managing Director, Management Company Finance

2019-Present Tremblant Capital
2016-2019 Sandbridge Capital | Controller
2013-2016 adMarketplace | Finance and Operations Manager
2012-2013 PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP | Assurance Associate
2008-2012 Cornell University | BS, Applied Economics and Management, Biometry and Statistics
Chris Crain
Managing Director, Systems Engineer

Chris Crain

Managing Director, Systems Engineer

2018-Present Tremblant Capital
2016-2018 NBCUniversal Media, LLC | Virtual Systems Engineer
2013-2016 Prudential Financial | Specialist, IT Infrastructure
2011-2015 Seton Hall University | BS, Economics
Dan Paliotta
Director, Retail & Consumer

Dan Paliotta

Director, Retail & Consumer

2018-Present Tremblant Capital
2017 Discovery Capital Management | Summer Intern
2014-2016 Tremblant Capital | Analyst, Intern
2014-2018 Boston College | BS, Communications
Danielle Hopkins
Vice President, Operations

Danielle Hopkins

Vice President, Operations

2021-Present Tremblant Capital
2017-2021 Third Point LLC | Senior Executive Assistant
2015-2017 Andell Inc. | Executive Assistant
2011-2015 Empyrean Capital Partners | Executive Assistant
2010-2011 Third Point LLC | Executive Assistant
2008-2010 Aon Benfield | Administrative Assistant
2002-2006 Boston University | B.S. in Therapeutic Studies
Frank J. Travers
Head of Client Advisory Group & Co-Head of ESG Strategy

Frank J. Travers

Head of Client Advisory Group & Co-Head of ESG Strategy

2013-Present Tremblant Capital
2009-2012 Larch Lane Advisors | Portfolio Manager
2003-2008 Pine Street Advisors | Portfolio Manager
1999-2003 CIC Group | Portfolio Manager
1997-1999 CIBC Oppenheimer | Director of Research
1994-1996 Morgan Stanley Asset Management | Senior International Equity Analyst
1991-1994 Fordham University | MBA
1984-1989 St. John’s University | BS, Finance
Haley Gallagher
Vice President, Research Services

Haley Gallagher

Vice President, Research Services

2019-Present Tremblant Capital
2018  TRUCK Restaurant | Assistant Manager
2017-2018 True North Capital Partners | Investment Banking Analyst
2016-2018 Iona College, Hagan School of Business | BBA, Finance
2014-2016 Siena College, School of Business
Jessica Page
Director, Client Advisory Group

Jessica Page

Director, Client Advisory Group

2013-Present Tremblant Capital
2007-2013 Oldendorff Carriers GmbH & Co. KG | Executive Assistant/Operations
2003-2007 Eastern Connecticut State University | BA, Business Economics
Jim Eckert
Partner, President, Chief Operating Officer

Jim Eckert

Partner, President, Chief Operating Officer

Since the firm’s inception, Jim Eckert has been responsible for managing all operational areas of the business.  Mr. Eckert is also a member of the Management and Investment/Risk Committees.

Prior to Tremblant, Mr. Eckert worked at Tudor Investment Corporation, a global asset management firm that invests in equity, fixed income, and commodity markets.  He began his career at Ernst and Young, where he worked in the Financial Services division.

Mr. Eckert received a BS in Accounting from the University of Albany.  He holds a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.
Julien Whitter
Director, Media, Internet & Telecommunications

Julien Whitter

Director, Media, Internet & Telecommunications

2019-Present Tremblant Capital
2017–2019 Bank of America Merrill Lynch | Investment Banking Analyst
2017 UBS Private Wealth Management | Portfolio Analyst, Intern
2016 Llenrock Group | Real Estate Investment Banking Analyst, Intern
2014–2018 University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School | BS, Finance
Kelly Branco
Chief Financial Officer, Chief Compliance Officer

Kelly Branco

Chief Financial Officer, Chief Compliance Officer

2013-Present Tremblant Capital
2011-2013 Ernst & Young| Senior Auditor
2010-2011 Protiviti | Consultant
2008-2010 Clifton Gunderson | Senior Auditor
2010-2014 George Washington University | MPS, Strategic Public Relations
2005-2007 Meredith College | BS, Accounting
Logan West
Human Resources and Operations

Logan West

Human Resources and Operations

2021-Present Tremblant Capital
2021 Impossible Kicks – Assistant Manager
2015–2017 Southern New Hampshire University, BS Criminal Justice
2012–2014 Pace University
Lydia Aquino
Director, Middle Office & Accounting

Lydia Aquino

Director, Middle Office & Accounting

2017-Present Tremblant Capital
2010-2017 Citco Fund Services | Middle Office Supervisor
2006-2010 Canon, USA | Staff Assistant
2003-2005 Girl Scouts of the USA | Unilever Project Coordinator
2009-2011 Baruch College | MBA, Marketing & International Business
1999-2003 Syracuse University | BS, Marketing Management
Manish Patel
Partner, Sector PM - Technology, Entertainment & Leisure

Manish Patel

Partner, Sector PM - Technology, Entertainment & Leisure

2007-Present Tremblant Capital
2002-2005 JMI Equity | Associate
2000-2002 Bain & Company | Associate Consultant
2005-2007 University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School | MBA
1996-1999 Drexel University | BS, Economics
Michael Bocker
Data Sciences

Michael Bocker

Data Sciences

2022-Present Tremblant Capital
2020-2022 SHEPHERD Therapeutics | ML/Data Analyst – Intern
2018-2022 Harvard University | BA, Applied Mathematics/Data Science
Michael Cling
Partner, Sector PM - Media, Internet & Telecommunications

Michael Cling

Partner, Sector PM - Media, Internet & Telecommunications

2005-Present Tremblant Capital
2002-2005 Ivory Capital Group | Senior Analyst
2000-2002 The Blackstone Group | Senior Analyst, Private Equity Group
1998-2000 Lehman Brothers, Inc. | Investment Banking Analyst
1994-1998 Georgetown University | BS, International Economics
Nick Onofrey
Managing Director, Data Sciences

Nick Onofrey

Managing Director, Data Sciences

2002-Present Tremblant Capital
2010-2012 New York University Stern School of Business | MBA
2000-2002 Georgetown University | MS, Computational Linguistics
1997-2000 Georgetown University | BS, Linguistics/Psychology
Patrick Foley
Trading

Patrick Foley

Trading

2020-Present Tremblant Capital
2016–2020 Arctic Securities LLC | Trader
2014 Evercore ISI Group | Analyst, Intern
2015 Villanova University | BA, Economics and Political Science
Phil Giovannetti
Managing Director, Head Trader

Phil Giovannetti

Managing Director, Head Trader

2006-Present Tremblant Capital
2001-2006 LRL/Ritchie Capital | Trader
2000-2001 Kadem Capital | Trader
1999-2000 Fleet Securities | NYSE Floor Clerk
1995-2000 New York University | BS, Finance
Ryan Evans
Vice President, Middle Office and Accounting

Ryan Evans

Vice President, Middle Office and Accounting

2022  Tremblant Capital
2021  Point 72 Asset Management | Equity Trade Support
2019 Point 72 Asset Management | PnL Analyst
2017 Intern at EULAV Asset Management
2016 & 2017 Intern at Purdue Pharma
2014-2018 Roger Williams University | BS, Finance
Sydney West
Client Advisory Group

Sydney West

Client Advisory Group

2022-Present Tremblant Capital
2021-2022 Impossible Kicks | Assistant Manager
2018-2020 Century21 | Realtor
2017 Barberino Auto Group | Sales Associate
2015 Park Place Towers | Leasing Specialist
2015-2016 Immaculata University | Marketing and Spanish
Tremblant Header

December 1, 2021

CC: Skechers Board of Directors

David and John,

Thank you for spending half a day helping us better understand the impressive business that you, the Greenberg family, and the entire team have thoughtfully built over the past thirty years. As we examine your market opportunity, product, pricing, brand, and distribution capabilities we remain extremely enthusiastic about the future of Skechers.

As long-term shareholders, we share your view that the best way to create lasting shareholder value is by growing the brand. Following our distribution center (“DC”) tour, we understand the capital investments in your DC will support growth, improve your e- commerce capabilities, reduce labor costs, and increase optionality through potential drop- ship partnerships down the road. Additionally, we appreciate the progress towards diversifying your board (Ms. Blair’s appointment in May 2019), additional communication on ESG topics such as sustainable materials and Uyghur labor concerns (March 2020), and instituting annual guidance (April 2021). We believe these changes improve both your business and the investment case.

Since Skechers has been among our top holdings for years, we are frequently asked by our own investors, “Why is Skechers so inexpensive?” Honestly, this question is puzzling to us as well since the fundamentals of your business are better than peers over an extended period of time. Specifically, over the past decade, Skechers has grown revenue faster than Nike, Adidas, Puma, Under Armour, Crocs, and any other relevant peer. While Skechers’ margins are lower, we remain confident in the margin progression and in the view that Skechers’ margins have greater upside potential than peers. Despite these impressive facts, Skechers continues to trade at less than half of the earnings multiples of these peers. In our experience, the businesses with the highest sustainable growth tend to trade at premium multiples over peers, not discounts.

Skechers is unique among its peers because the founding family continues to control the business through super-voting shares. The evidence would suggest that the Greenberg family has proven to be arguably the best management in all of footwear in recent years. However, we often hear concerns about SG&A volatility, lack of dividends, lack of buybacks, lack of capital markets days, lack of internal investor relations, and frequent share sales by insiders. Those not involved in the stock (or in some cases short) point to these factors and suggest that the family is not truly focused on shareholders. This narrative is limiting value creation for all shareholders, including the Greenberg family.

We know management is highly aligned with shareholders as the Greenberg family owns ~1.1B of stock. However, we believe our suggestions could create greater than $4B of incremental value over the next ~10 years just for the Greenberg family alone, and we are happy to walk you through our assumptions. Most of these concerns can be addressed relatively easily. We believe once those concerns are addressed, shareholders will likely feel so aligned with management and the Greenberg family that unease around the founding family dynamics will dissipate, driving the multiple higher and creating tremendous value for all shareholders. Beyond the obvious shareholder value creation, we believe a higher share price would create additional value by attracting more top talent, motivating employees through RSU’s, and allowing potentially accretive acquisitions down the road.

We suggest the following:

  • Eliminate the Dual Share Class Structure (by removing super-voting shares)
    • In our view, this is the single largest overhang on the stock. While we are not suggesting any changes to the day-to-day operations of the business, this change would reassure the market that Skechers will continue to be run in shareholders’ best interests.
    • We believe the family absolutely should continue to hold the same key management positions and significant Board representation.
  • Initiate an Aggressive Buyback
    • We believe Skechers can conservatively buyback ~40% of the business over the next 10 years (unless there is material multiple expansion during that period) while still continuing to build a net cash balance sheet.
      • This results in a greater than 60% uplift to EPS in year 2030 (versus no buybacks)
    • This additional EPS growth and prudent capital allocation should close the multiple gap over time creating another ~100% upside (because peers trade at more than twice SKX’s current forward multiple)
      • We do not expect this multiple gap to close quickly. Additionally, as long-term shareholders, we hope that the multiple remains low so the company can buyback more shares!
    • Lastly, this would highlight that your own shares are more attractive than any potential acquisition in the market right now which is something we strongly believe
  • Initiate a Dividend
    • Even a small dividend reduces the need for insider share sales
    • Attracts a more diverse investor base
    • Reduces total shareholder return volatility
    • Illustrates the sustained earnings power of the business
  • Host a Capital Markets Event
    • Shows the active engagement of management with shareholders
    • Highlights the value of higher growth, under-earning markets where shareholders have historically received little detail and thus been unwilling to ascribe value
    • Explains the expense savings achieved through significant DC investments in recent years, and the corresponding increase in excess cash flow going forward
    • Provides a forum in which to show a clear path to medium-term revenue and earnings targets, reducing focus solely on quarterly results
  • Internal Investor Relations
    • Someone working closely with John Vandemore (CFO) should be able to host more prospective investor conversations, allowing the company to cast a wider net for interested investors
    • Consistent with other players in the industry, it shows a concern for shareholders and it frees up more of John’s time for other responsibilities including growth strategy, capital allocation, and expense management

As promised, we have sent The Outsiders by William Thorndike. We hope that you will share these copies with the Greenbergs and other Board members as we believe these detailed examples of eight CEOs whose stocks outperformed the S&P by over 20x during their tenures are quite powerful. More importantly, their strategies are repeatable and applicable in the case of Skechers as it is a sustainable, highly cash generative business trading at an inexplicably low multiple. This creates the opportunity to generate many billions of dollars in value for the Greenberg family and other shareholders through thoughtful capital allocation that focuses on maximizing long-term shareholder value.

We look forward to continuing the discussion. Once again, thank you for taking the time to explain some of the exciting aspects of your business at your DC recently.

Sincerely,

Brett Barakett, Austin Stephen, and Bryan Walsh

Tremblant Capital Group