Spanx names a new CEO | CNN Business

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Spanx, a brand founded by shapewear pioneer Sara Blakely, has named Kim Jones her successor as CEO.

The Atlanta-based company promoted Jones, a longtime Spanx executive, on Friday. Blakely will continue to serve as the chair of Spanx’s board.

Jones joined Spanx in 2005 and previously held roles as the brand’s chief financial officer and president. She said she wants to expand Spanx’s international and digital growth and its apparel offerings. Last week the company launched its first-ever dress collection.

“She has been instrumental in the company’s growth from startup to the category-defining, digital-first apparel brand it is today,” Blakely said. “Her love and deep understanding for the brand and the customer make her the perfect fit (no pun-intended) for the job.”

Blakely founded Spanx in 2000 with just $5,000 in savings. Two decades later, the brand is synonymous with shapewear and has inspired a plethora of other players in the market it created, including Skims, the company founded in 2019 by Kim Kardash.

In October 2021, the company inked a deal with private equity firm Blackstone for a majority stake in Spanx, a move that valued the business at $1.2 billion. She celebrated the deal by gifting employees with two first-class plane tickets and $10,000 each.

Blakely was named by Forbes as the youngest self-made female billionaire in 2012. She told CNN Business in 2018 that she tried to hold down a handful of gigs — including a failed tryout to be Goofy at Disney World — before founding her company.

“My dream is for there to be many more female inventors,” she said at the time. “We need the contribution of women.”

— CNN’s Rob McLean contributed to this report

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