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Ryan Babenzien announces departure as CEO of Greats

By Andrea Byrne

Sep. 3, 2020

People

CEO and founder of Greats, Ryan Babenzien, has announced he is leaving the footwear brand.

Babenzien took to Instagram and wrote: “After almost seven rewarding years, I’ve decided to step down as the CEO of Greats. I never thought about what it would be like to write those words until recently, but after thinking about what’s important to me, what I enjoy doing and what I’m good at, I have come to the realisation that it is time to let someone else guide the company and for me to move on from my role as CEO of Greats.”

Greats was founded in 2014 in Brooklyn, New York and it was Brooklyn’s first sneaker brand. The retailer creates responsibly made footwear designed to be trend-resistant and durable, according to Greats.

“I set out to create a footwear brand that lives well beyond me, whether I’m the CEO or not. I believe that we have established the foundation for Greats to not only continue on but to flourish and succeed without me. Greats has set many firsts and achieved many milestones; building Greats has been more gratifying than I ever imagined it would be when we started the company,” he continued.

Designer and businessman, Steve Madden, acquired the brand in 2019 and is yet to make a comment on the CEO’s exit.

Babenzien concluded his statement: “I need everyone to understand that this decision comes after months of reflection on my personal goals and at no cost to my support for the future of the brand. I am Greats #1 fan and I am forever grateful for the opportunity I had in building a brand that consumers love and support. It’s been an honor to work with everyone who is part of the Greats family, both current and prior, immediate and extended and I am looking forward to cheering for Greats’ continued success.”

Photo credit: Facebook/Greats Brand