Following the recently announced transition to a new manufacturing and sales strategy, King Koil announced that three industry veterans would be joining the company to help CEO David Binke execute the new strategy.
Howard Galant, formerly senior vice president sales for E.S. Kluft & Company’s Western Division, becomes executive vice president of sales for King Koil’s Western Division; Gary Wells, most recently a consultant in finance for Serta Simmons Bedding, joins as chief financial and chief information officer; and Jayapal (JP) Seshadri, an international attorney for King Koil based in Asia, will relocate to Chicago headquarters where he will be executive vice president of licensing and compliance, overseeing all licensing and legal affairs.
“As we transition from a licensing to [a] direct manufacturing model, we needed to enhance our senior leadership team with top-flight professionals. In assembling the team to take our business to new levels of success, I’ve turned toward people with whom I have worked. These are the first of many new appointments we expect to announce over the next few weeks,” Binke said.
As executive vice president of sales for the Western Division for King Koil, Galant will manage the company’s sales throughout the region. A well-known industry executive, Galant most recently was senior vice president of sales for E.S. Kluft where he managed sales for the Western U.S. and the company’s international business. He had been with the company since 2010 in a variety of sales positions.
As CFO and CIO, Wells will oversee the implementation of new technology and financial systems for the newly restructured company. Most recently a business and financial systems consultant with Serta Simmons Bedding Co., Wells was also the chief financial officer of E.S. Kluft & Co. for nearly four years. In addition to other controller and CFO positions outside of the industry, Wells has worked with a number of bedding brands, including Chittenden & Eastman as COO and CFO and Sealy as regional controller.
Prior to joining King Koil in the U.S., JP was the general counsel for the King Koil group operating out of Singapore, and prior to that, he held globally focused senior legal roles in a variety of industries. In his new role, JP will be working with the company’s licensees, vendors and retailers to develop and execute business agreements.
As part of the new appointments, Owen Shoemaker, King Koil’s chief operating officer, will take a more focused role with the company’s international licensing network. With additional focus on King Koil’s international business development, Shoemaker will be working to assemble a team of executives around the globe to provide a strong network of services and resources to better serve the company’s international business partners.
For more information, visit kingkoil.com.
About King Koil: A top 10 mattress manufacturer, King Koil boasts more than 30 licensees in more than 90 countries where King Koil mattresses are sold. Headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Willowbrook, Ill., the company has a long, rich history that reaches back to 1898 when Samuel Bronstein founded United States Bedding in St. Paul, Minn. What started out as six employees in a small factory has continued to grow. During the 1930s, U.S. Bedding improved the bedspring and was looking for a new name for its product. From there, the King Koil name was born.