UPDATE: George Zimmer responded to getting the boot by issuing a statement that he’s far from pleased. In fact, he sounds pretty ticked off.
He tells CNBC:
“Over the last 40 years, I have built MW into a multi-billion dollar company with amazing employees and loyal customers who value the products and service they receive at MW. Over the past several months I have expressed my concerns to the Board about the direction the company is currently heading.Instead of fostering the kind of dialogue in the Boardroom that has in part contributed to our success, the Board has inappropriately chosen to silence my concerns through termination as an executive officer.”
Stock analysts also noted that despite Zimmer’s exit, he doesn’t even has the right to his image; “the company has the legal right to his image as well as 500 hours of footage of Zimmer.”
I feel lost. I’ve never had to buy a man’s suit because I am not a man but what if I did want to buy a suit from Men’s Wearhouse? There will be no one to guarantee it, at least not the guy I’ve come to know and trust (despite my nonexistent suit needs) from the commercials. He’s just gotten the axe, the company announced today.
George Zimmer wasn’t just the man who told men, “You’re going to like the way you look, I guarantee it.” The bearded face of the company opened the first Men’s Wearhouse store in 1973, reports CNNMoney, but he also served as the executive chairman of the board. Until now.
“The Board [of Directors] expects to discuss with Mr. Zimmer the extent, if any, and terms of his ongoing relationship with the company,” the retailer said in a prepared statement.
There’s been no word yet as to why the company fired its co-founder, but Men’s Wearhouse has also put off its annual shareholders meeting, which was supposed to be today. That moves is necessary so it can “re-nominate the existing slate of directors without Mr. Zimmer.”
Like I said, never bought a man’s suit and have no clue if I’d ever go to Men’s Wearhouse. But the fact that I know its spokesperson despite even being targeted in the ads, well, it goes to show that a little bit of bearded confidence goes a long way in the advertising world.