Funko CEO Brian Mariotti prepares to ring the Nasdaq opening bell in celebration of the company’s initial public offering of stock in New York in November 2017. (Nasdaq file)

Funko CEO Brian Mariotti prepares to ring the Nasdaq opening bell in celebration of the company’s initial public offering of stock in New York in November 2017. (Nasdaq file)

Funko CEO will become the chief creative officer next year

Brian Mariotti will step aside as CEO. Funko’s current president will become chief executive in 2022.

EVERETT — Brian Mariotti, CEO of Funko, will assume a new role at the pop culture toy company next year and step aside as chief executive.

Mariotti will become the firm’s chief creative officer. Funko’s current president, Andrew Perlmutter, will become the Everett-based toymaker’s new CEO.

The leadership change is effective in January.

Mariotti will continue as a member of the board of directors.

The shift is intended to “maintain Funko’s signature creative leadership, while positioning the company to deliver long-term growth and shareholder value,” the company said in a news release.

“As chief creative officer, Mr. Mariotti will be able to concentrate more fully on the creative decisions that remain central to Funko’s success. His oversight will include product innovation, fan engagement, business development and Funko’s Digital Pop! product line,” the company said.

Andrew Perlmutter (Funko)

Andrew Perlmutter (Funko)

“I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished at Funko,” Mariotti said. “We built a small company into the leading pop culture platform, offering our fans across the globe a way to interact and connect with some of their most beloved icons.”

“This transition will allow me to remain closely involved with the business while focusing more exclusively on the creative and fan-centric areas I am passionate about,” Mariotti said. “We have an amazing set of opportunities in front of us, and there isn’t a better person to lead us than Andrew. His experience and vision will be critical in delivering the next phase of Funko’s growth.”

Perlmutter joined the company as senior vice president of sales in 2013 and was promoted to president in 2017. Before that he was a co-founder of Bottle Rocket Collective, a board and travel games firm, where he oversaw manufacturing and sales.

“I’m honored to assume the role of CEO in January, while maintaining the longstanding and fruitful partnership Brian and I have enjoyed for many years,” Perlmutter said.

“With the transition, we plan to continue to pursue a four-pillar approach that focuses on leveraging our core Pop! platform; driving additional revenue streams through product diversification; accelerating growth in our direct-to-consumer channel; and expanding our international business,” Perlmutter said.

A man stands outside Funko on Friday morning in Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald) Aug. 6, 2021
The Funko headquarters in Everett on Friday. (Sue Misao / The Herald)

A man stands outside Funko on Friday morning in Everett. (Sue Misao / The Herald) Aug. 6, 2021 The Funko headquarters in Everett on Friday. (Sue Misao / The Herald)

Funko was founded in 1998 in Snohomish by Mike Becker. Bobbleheads and coin banks based on cereal advertising mascots and retro characters were among the early products.

In 2005, Becker sold the company to Mariotti, who expanded the portfolio through licensing deals for popular characters from comics, movies and TV shows.

Five years later, Funko debuted its signature Pop! line of vinyl figures with oversized heads and giant eyes.

The company opened its flagship 17,000-square-foot store and headquarters in the old Bon Marche building in downtown Everett in 2017. That same year, Funko went public on the Nasdaq Global Select Market.

As of Friday’s market close, the value of Funko shares of stock have increased about 87% since the beginning of the year.

On Thursday, Funko reported second-quarter net income of $13.8 million after reporting a loss in the same period a year ago.

On a per-share basis, the company said in a news release, it had net income of 34 cents per share. Earnings, adjusted for one-time gains and costs, came to 40 cents per share. Results exceeded Wall Street expectations. Analysts expected earnings of 17 cents per share. The company posted revenue of $236.1 million in the period, also surpassing forecasts.

Janice Podsada; jpodsada@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3097; Twitter: JanicePods

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