Leadership change at Wattbike as Richard Baker steps down and Stephen Loftus takes the saddle
April 6, 2023
/ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ After more than 10 years at Wattbike, Richard Baker has decided to step down as CEO. Stephen Loftus, most recently Chief Commercial Officer at Brompton, will take over from May 1 while Richard will stay involved with the brand as Special Advisor to the Board.
Baker joined Wattbike in 2011 and has been instrumental in the growth and success of the UK’s leading indoor cycling brand. He was at the heart of the successful launch of the Wattbike Atom and skilfully steered the company through the pandemic after becoming CEO in 2018. He will stay involved with Wattbike and the company will continue to benefit from his knowledge and experience.
Loftus was, until recently, Chief Commercial Officer at Brompton and helped the iconic folding bike business quadruple in size and become an international omnichannel brand. Before Brompton, Loftus worked in sales, marketing and innovation roles in the international drinks industry – for companies including Diageo, Red Bull and Constellation. Loftus will join Wattbike later this month and officially take over as CEO from May 1.
The news follows a busy period for the brand, which appointed Greg Nieuwenhuys as Chairman in March. Nieuwenhuys is currently Chairman of Mammut Sports Group, a leading Swiss mountain brand, and was previously CEO of the leading UK retailers Cotswold Outdoors, Snow+Rock and Runners Need. In 2020, Wattbike received an £11.5m investment from consumer brands specialist Piper to help fuel growth in the UK and further penetrate the US and Asian markets.
Richard Baker said: ‘After 10 fantastic years, it is time for me to step back and allow a fresh management team to continue Wattbike’s successful story. I am immensely proud of what we have achieved – the team, products and brand we have built. I’m excited for the team going forward under Stephen’s leadership and to support in my new role as a Special Advisor. With Stephen’s background, experience and approach, I am confident he will take Wattbike to new heights.’
Stephen Loftus said: ‘I am passionate about working for businesses that improve fitness and wellbeing and helping them fulfill their international potential. Wattbike is a unique product that started with Olympic and professional athletes as an innovative data-driven training tool to significantly improve their performance, and now serves a much broader customer base. I look forward to helping the talented team let more people worldwide discover how a Wattbike can change their life for the better, delight customers with continuous innovation and fulfill the potential of the business. I am grateful for Rich’s support as I step into this exciting new role.’
Greg Nieuwenhuys said: ‘I am grateful for everything Richard has done for Wattbike and that he will continue to be involved in the journey ahead. With Stephen we have found a strong leader with a great track record, especially in sales and marketing, and I am excited about working with him, the team and our investors Piper to deliver this next chapter of growth for the brand.’
For more information visit www.wattbike.com
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Wattbike is the original, indoor smart bike innovator, offering the most accurate and reliable training tools used by champions, athletes and fitness enthusiasts worldwide. Wattbike’s mission is to help improve the health and performance of every athlete in the world – That’s why Wattbike is chosen by both the world’s top sporting teams such as the All Blacks, as well as thousands of everyday athletes at home. Wattbike was born more than 20 years ago with one goal – to create the ultimate indoor training bike. No other indoor trainer measures every pedal stroke and revolution so precisely, giving instant insights to get the most from every workout. Expertly crafted and designed in the UK, Wattbikes are tough enough to withstand the intense training of elite athletes, while beautiful enough to sit in the homes of everyday athletes too.