Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Yogawear founder an IDEA winner

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The entrepreneur behind yoga-wear and luxury workout apparel is the University of Manitoba's International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award (IDEA) winner for 2013.

Chip Wilson was named this year's winner by the Associates, a group of more than 260 prominent business leaders who support the Asper School of Business.

Wilson founded Lululemon Athletica Inc. in 1998. It has become a very popular name in yoga and fitness wear, with revenue of $700 million from 137 stores. The majority of the stores are in North America, but Lululemon has a store presence in Australia and New Zealand, with showrooms in Hong Kong and Great Britain.

Wilson holds a BA in economics from the University of Calgary. In 1980, he founded Westbeach Snowboard Ltd., a surf, skate and snowboard vertical retailer. Forbes Magazine has ranked Wilson as Canada's ninth-wealthiest person, with a net worth of $2.9 billion.

"Chip Wilson exemplifies the passion, drive, vision and entrepreneurial spirit that the IDEA Award represents," said David Barnard, University of Manitoba president and vice-chancellor, in a prepared statement.

The award will be presented to Wilson at a formal dinner in Winnipeg at the Winnipeg Convention Centre on June 4.

Past IDEA recipients include Albert D. Cohen, Israel H. Asper, Richard Branson, Paul Desmarais, Akio Morita, Ross Perot, Heather Reisman, Dame Anita Roddick, Gerald Schwartz, Peter Munk, Jim Balsillie, Jim Sinegal and last year's recipient, Stu Clark.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 19, 2013 B7

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