CAREERS: 3 Private Brand Managers – REI

REI’s private label business is growing and we’re hiring!  Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to join the REI Gear & Apparel team at our HQ in Kent, WA as a Brand Manager.  We are offering several new roles to support the following categories:

Camp: The Camp Brand Manager will assume a leadership role and drive private label growth in our brand defining gear categories including tents, packs, and sleeping bags as well as guide our brands in travel and hardgoods accessory lines.  You will be responsible for identifying trends and setting and executing the strategies to continue our tradition of innovation and award-winning gear.

Outdoorwear: The Outdoorwear Brand Manager will lead our product line management team for our camp/hike private label apparel lines for men, women and kids including outerwear, sportswear, activewear and accessories.  You will lead the brand strategy and collaborate with your partners in design and merchandising to bring cohesive trend-right product lines to market to drive our significant apparel business.

Actionsports: The Actionsports Brand Manager role provides an opportunity to set the direction and continue to drive our growth and passion for our private label cycling brand Novara.  You will also support the strategy development for future private brand categories and lead our team in our systems and process efficiency enhancements.

Brand Manager
This job contributes to REI’s success by leading a team of Product Line Managers (PLM’s) to achieve sales, margin and in-stock goals for $90 – $150MM in company annual sales.  Develops strategic private label brand plans that support REI’s corporate policies, drive financial performance, focus on the customer and guides product line development.  Directs and manages private label brand positioning, marketing, merchandising, category and collection development, and financial planning.  Works collaboratively with Divisional Merchandising Managers, PLM’s, Design Managers, and various cross divisional partners to ensure cohesive customer facing presentation of brands, products and stories within product development, marketing, e-commerce, direct mail, visual merchandising, and retail.  Models and acts in accordance with REI’s guiding values and mission.

Leading the Way:

  • Identifies and communicates key responsibilities and practices to ensure the organization promotes a successful attitude, confidence in leadership, and teamwork to achieve business results.
  • Supports the implementation of company programs, procedures, methods and practices to promote REI key messages.
  • Challenges and inspires employees to achieve business results.
  • Ensures employees adhere to legal and operational compliance requirements.
  • Oversees training and development of employees directly and indirectly managed and makes effective staffing decisions.
  • Conducts and ensures the completion of performance reviews.
  • Provides coaching, direction and leadership support to employees in order to achieve department, company and customer results.
  • Establishes and maintains visibility within the department.
  • Monitors operational statistics, reports trends, variances and issues, and takes appropriate action.

Responsibilities & Deliverables:

  • Create and implement the 1-5 year brand plan that communicates priorities, collections, strategies, customer and marketplace trends.
  • Partners with Planner to create brand and specialty shop financial goals based on corporate and brand strategic objectives and financial, market, and industry trends.
  • Ensures identification of key market, lifestyle and product trends affecting the brand and their category responsibilities and develops brand and collection plans to meet market opportunities.
  • Creates business plan for new category development by researching sales potential, market size, assortment requirements, and relevance to the brand.
  • Ensure product line offerings and initial margins support brand and divisional goals.
  • Collaborates with Design Managers to develop strategy and ensure appropriate brand positioning, collection, gender and cross department consistency in product line execution.
  • Collaborates with Merchandising to create 1-5 year product planning direction for division and shared vision consistency across departments.
  • Creates and coordinates cross department collections, stories and themes to create cohesive merchandising for seasonal product launches.
  • Provides content and brand priority stories across marketing programs, public affairs and sales channels.
  • Ensures integrity of brand creative, positioning and differentiation in product line management and collateral.
  • Creates strategy and direction for brand retail staff training and supporting materials.
  • Creates strategy and provides support for private label brand connection to our customers including market research, social media, and retail events.


  • 5+ years of brand management experience including product line development and management, financial planning and brand/product marketing with 3+ years managing multi-million dollar product lines.
  • Merchandise management experience developing successful and brand consistent product lines, collections, and themes.
  • Insight and experience in financial planning and forecasting.
  • Knowledge and experience in brand and product development process and manufacturing
  • Ability to indentify market, lifestyle and product trends and integrate them into relevant product lines.
  • Knowledge of business principles from multiple disciplines and ability to apply these principles in driving change/outcomes in cross-functional projects and activities.
  • Experience in developing and leading brand positioning and brand/product marketing stories.
  • Knowledge of retail and multi-channel sales and distribution, preferred.
  • Understanding of REI Brand and the outdoor specialty market, preferred.
  • Bachelor’s degree in Business, Marketing, Fashion Merchandising or related subject(s), preferred.
  • Proven cross-functional team building and relationship building skills.
  • Builds capacity of individuals and teams through effective employee development, involvement, communication and supervision efforts.
  • Creates a strong, mutually supportive work spirit and culture where people can perform at their best.
  • Establishes trust and inspires others.
  • Makes effective organization and people decisions in a manner consistent with REI’s values and ethics.
  • Delivers on commitments and holds others to the same.
  • Champions the organization and advocates solutions in the overall Company’s best interest.
  • Uses business knowledge, innovative thinking, and sound judgment in the solution of problems or the pursuit of business opportunities.
  • Consolidates information from various sources including feedback from others to reach sound decisions.
  • Considers the ultimate impact of decisions and actions on internal and external customers.
  • Fosters change in company direction.
  • Effectively plans and executes changes.


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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.