DALLAS, Feb. 10, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- KidKraft, a global leader in the toy and juvenile products industries, today announced the addition of three executives to its leadership team to support global growth initiatives. Lawrence Writer has joined as Chief Financial Officer and George Benz has joined as Senior Vice President, Marketing & eCommerce. Both will be based in Dallas at the company's global headquarters. Martijn de Bruijn will join the company's European team in Holland next month as European Commercial Director.
"We are fortunate to have this incredible depth and breadth of talent join our already very strong executive team," said Steven Lampert, KidKraft's CEO. Mr. Lampert continued, "Given our ambitious growth objectives, I am very excited about these new executives' abilities to further scale our business globally and continue to deliver best in class KidKraft branded products to our retail partners and loyal consumers around the world."
A core element of KidKraft's growth plan is continuing to build out its global management infrastructure and to pursue growth through strategic acquisitions. Mr. Writer will be responsible for the finance, legal and information technology functions, delivering on the company's growth strategies with a particular emphasis on international expansion and acquisition integrations. Mr. Writer most recently served as Chief Operating Officer & Chief Financial Officer for Hillerich & Bradsby Co., parent company of the famous Louisville Slugger baseball brand. Prior to Hillerich & Bradsby, he held roles with AlixPartners LLC, The Carlyle Group and Goldman Sachs & Co. Mr. Writer earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from the University of Washington. He received his Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Arts from The Wharton School and The Lauder Institute at The University of Pennsylvania, respectively.
A critical driver of KidKraft's growth strategies is an investment to build the KidKraft brand globally, and to leverage superior digital marketing and consumer insights to drive the company's expanding product assortment. "This is an exciting time for KidKraft," said Charmaine Lampert, KidKraft's President & Chief Creative Officer, "and we are so happy to bring on this new talent to help us accelerate our brand's growth." Mr. Benz will oversee all global marketing and digital consumer engagement. A toy industry veteran, Mr. Benz comes to KidKraft most recently from Mattel, Inc., where he spent fifteen years in a wide range of product development, brand management, digital marketing and eCommerce leadership roles, spanning globally recognized brands such as Fisher-Price, DC Entertainment, Hot Wheels and Matchbox. Previously, Mr. Benz led e-commerce and omni-channel marketing initiatives for online retailer Petsmart.com. Mr. Benz received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Dartmouth College, and a Masters of Business Administration in Marketing from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management.
KidKraft has focused on significant international expansion over the last several years, and plans to further that growth with additional key account partnerships. Mr. de Bruijn will lead the company's international sales efforts in Europe. He comes to KidKraft most recently from Red Bull where he was Sales Director, and prior to that from Procter & Gamble Europe, where he held key account sales roles across several brands. Mr. de Bruijn holds a Bachelor of Business Technology degree from Fontys University Eindhoven, and a Masters Degree in Business Economics from Erasmus University Rotterdam RSM.
KidKraft is a global leader in the toy industry committed to inspiring children to develop their creativity and imagination through its portfolio of toys, play sets and furniture. For nearly fifty years since 1968, the brand has had an unwavering focus on the design and delivery of high quality products, serving all channels of distribution as a result of the company's world-class supply chain. KidKraft believes every child has a limitless capacity to create and explore. The products and exceptional customer service allow KidKraft to offer new adventures in play to children throughout the world. In July 2015, KidKraft was acquired by MidOcean Partners. For additional information, visit www.KidKraft.com.
SOURCE KidKraft, Inc.