Peloton Loses CEO After Stock Plunge

Jeff Bukowski /
Jeff Bukowski /

Peloton, the once leading company in getting people to get healthier at home is now quickly losing their way and watching their future fade. With the COVID pandemic concluding, people aren’t as enthralled with their subscription-required home gym equipment. With their share price dropping 92% since CEO Barry McCarthy took the helm, now he’s stepping away.

Reports from The Verge indicated that the company would downsize its workforce by 15% in early May. This contradicts what McCarthy said during a 1st Quarter 2023 earnings call where he proclaimed he had made the company profitable and that the layoffs were done. A former exec with Spotify and Netflix, McCarthy was brought in about two years ago to replace founder John Foley, and to get the ship headed in the right direction.

Since then, McCarthy has presided over the massive hemorrhaging of value from the company.

The loss of McCarthy and the other 15% of their workforce is part of a broad 12-month restructuring plan to drop their annual expenses by $200 million. With the company looking to restructure debt, it’s hard to find someone willing to take on the risk of an industry going belly up. Board members Karen Boone and Chris Bruzzo will assume co-CEO roles until a replacement can be found.

Retaining roughly 3,000 employees globally, Peloton has fallen extensively from its height of 8,600 employees in 2021. Hit with a surge of people demanding their products during the pandemic, they were caught without supplies for the boost in sales. As a result, they dumped millions into fixing their shipping and supply chain problems. Unfortunately, they found themselves with a glut in supplies and a dwindling customer base as gyms reopened and social distancing ended.

Looking for new avenues of revenue, they have started partnering with hotel chains. Hyatt is contracted to bring their bikes to more than 800 locations. Other chains and companies are reportedly being courted, but they are hesitant. With so many people refusing to use Peloton after they ended their Apple Watch GymKit support, it will be an uphill push to regain what they lost. Unlike their bikes, though, nobody is yelling at them to pick up the pace or shouting them out for a mediocre accomplishment.