Everything You Need To Know About The Billionaire Canadian Family Behind Lululemon
Lululemon's Wilson family is living large in Vancouver.
Lululemon is an undeniable superstar when it comes to the athletic wear business. You already know their yoga pants and leggings are some of the best, and if you were following fashion trends in early to mid-2000s you most likely owned one of their iconic thick headbands.
But what you may not know is that their founder, Chip Wilson is one of the richest people in the world. He and his family are originally from and living right here in Canada.
The Vancouver businessman landed a spot on the top 500 richest people list recently, thanks to his $3.9 billion worth from Lululemon. But, he's not alone in his wealth. The 62-year-old is also a two-time husband and a father to five sons.
Chip's first marriage was to Nancy Wilson, though it didn't last long. However, in their short relationship, the couple had two sons, Brett and John James - a.k.a. JJ, who has actually made a name for himself in the retail fashion business too.
After attending some business school in Edmonton before switching to fashion at Ryerson, JJ Wilson made a name as the founder of a luxury Canadian streetwear brand, Kit and Ace, which started a few years ago thanks to some help from his dad Chip. When he isn't working with his clothing company, he is at the fitness club he also is a co-founder of or posting constantly on his Instagram.
He loves sharing photos of everything from his travels around the world to his girlfriend to his family pics of his brothers. The only other Wilson family member more active on social media is Chip's second wife, Shannon.
Shannon Wilson is Chip's second and current wife, as well as the mother to his remaining three teenage children, Duke and twins Tag and Tor. All three boys go to Vancouver College, a fancy private school in the city.
More than anything Shannon loves sharing pictures of her boys on her Instagram, but she isn't just a mom. She is a designer and partner in both of JJ's businesses, Kit and Ace and Ride Cycle Club, and even created her own special type of cashmere fabric.
The family's successes have not only earned them lots of money, but also pretty big honours from the community. In 2015 both Shannon and Chip were awarded honorary doctorates from Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Richmond. The design school at the university is also named after the family.
While the family travels a lot, according to their Instagrams, when they are back in Vancouver they're enjoying their lives in a cozy $78.8 million mansion. Their house has actually been named the most expensive residential property in BC for five years in a row.
The house is a waterfront property, located on Point Grey Road in Vancouver's super scenic Kitsilano neighbourhood. The area has been referred to as Vancouver's golden mile and the property seems to feature a tennis court, swimming pool, and modern rooftop lounges. The house also has large hedges and gates out front to maintain the family's privacy.
Despite the ongoing success of the company, Chip Wilson actually stepped down as CEO and retired from the board in 2015. This came shortly after he found himself in a scandal having said that some women's bodies just weren't right for Lululemon's clothes. He later apologized for the comment.
He sold even more of his stakes in the company for over $200 million earlier this year, but he maintains a 13% share in the yoga-ware brand, but he no longer makes any operational decisions.
Chip Wilson is now the 496th richest person in the entire world. Other people on the list include Oprah Winfrey, fellow Canadian Joseph Tsai, and Mark Zuckerberg. Holding the number one spot is Amazon's Jeff Bezos.