Quixtar Chief McDonald Quits

April 25, 2005
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ADA — Quixtar Senior Vice President and Managing Director Ken McDonald announced Thursday that he’s stepping down from his current position with Alticor Inc. to pursue a leisurely retirement.

McDonald said Alticor President Doug DeVos and Chairman Steve Van Andel will name his replacement in a couple of weeks.

McDonald put together the team that worked with the company’s Independent Business Owners (IBOs) to develop the Quixtar business model known as “I-commerce.” The team designed and built the online business, which launched in 1999.

Quixtar offers health and beauty products such as the Nutrilite line of vitamins and dietary supplements, Artistry skin care and cosmetics, the eSpring water purifier and XS Energy Drinks. The online store also sells hundreds of brand name products and offers additional shopping opportunities for IBOs and members through its partner stores. Fiscal 2004 sales were $1.1 billion.

“This is absolutely the right time to retire,” McDonald said. “I’m at the top of my game, we’re in our third billion-dollar-plus year, I’m 55 years old, I’ve got good health and I’ve got a second home on BeaverIsland that will be ready to move into next month. Thanks to this business and 28 years with Alticor, I’ve got the means to do whatever I want from now on.”

McDonald’s career has been devoted to advertising, public relations and marketing, and more recently, Quixtar.

McDonald hired on at Amway in 1977 as marketing supervisor for Nutrilite nutrition products. Over the years he rose through the ranks of the company’s marketing and communications divisions and was eventually positioned as head of all Amway sales and marketing operations in the Americas. He worked for Revlon Health Care for nearly five years prior to joining Amway.

Quixtar’s history has been marked by a number of milestones. What stands out in McDonald’s mind are the “dollar milestones” — the first $5 million sales day, the first $10 million sales day and the first $1 billion year.

“Those are always good milestones,” he said. “Beyond that, there are the public milestones like being named the No. 1 online health and beauty business. But I think the greatest milestones for me in the success of Quixtar was seeing the happiness and confidence in the eyes of new leaders as they continued to qualify for higher rewards in this business.”

In fiscal 2004, Quixtar IBOs earned $373 million in bonuses and other incentives.

McDonald said he intends to travel a lot and shuttle between his home in Ada and the one on Beaver Island.

“I’m going to miss the people. We have an outstanding executive team, an outstanding team of employees and IBOs that are young, diverse and vibrant. I’m going to miss the buzz and excitement, but I’m going to be able to do anything I want for the rest of my life, which is a good feeling.”    

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