He Heads a $23B Fashion Site. He's Walking Away for His Wife

Rubin Ritter, co-CEO of EU e-commerce giant Zalando, wants to prioritize his spouse's career
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 7, 2020 8:49 AM CST
E-Commerce Bigwig Quits So Wife Can Focus on Her Career
Rubin Ritter, co-CEO of Zalando, attends a news conference in Berlin on Aug. 28, 2014.   (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Rubin Ritter's contract with Europe's largest fashion site isn't set to expire for two-plus years. But a surprise announcement Sunday from the 38-year-old co-CEO of the Berlin-based Zalando indicates he has other plans for the near future—ones that include letting his spouse's career take center stage. "I want to devote more time to my growing family," Ritter said in a statement. "My wife and I have agreed that for the coming years, her professional ambitions should take priority." The BBC notes the $23 billion company isn't naming Ritter's wife or saying what she does for a living, but it says they have one child, with another due early next year. Ritter has headed up Zalando, which CNN Business notes sells clothing and footwear from such high-end brands as Ralph Lauren and Adidas, since 2010, alongside co-CEOs Robert Gentz and David Schneider, who will continue to lead the site.

Business Insider reports the company has a presence in 17 European countries, with around 14,000 employees, and that it brought in $2.2 billion in revenue in Q3 of 2020; last year, it saw revenue of about $7.9 billion. Ritter, who will officially step down in May at the annual company meeting, is one of Germany's highest-paid execs: He made $24.5 million in 2018, and a more modest but still ample $8.3 million last year. "I am eager to allow myself time to explore new interests beyond Zalando," he noted in his statement. "I have always felt that being a part of the Zalando team is a gift and a privilege, and it will be incredibly hard for me to leave it behind." (More fashion stories.)

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