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Monday, May 20, 2024

Former NOBULL Exec Explains Departure, Plans For New Company

  • Todd Meleney served as chief marketing officer since NOBULL's founding in 2015.
  • The 35-year-old is planning a new venture after stepping down from NOBULL.
Todd Meleney

In December, the NFL made an undisclosed financial investment in NOBULL, the performance apparel company that two months earlier had signed on to replace Reebok as the presenting sponsor of the NFL Scouting Combine.

Not long after the brand’s first affiliated combine experience, a handful of early NOBULL employees stepped down at the beginning of May, Front Office Sports has learned. A few weeks later, NOBULL instituted layoffs reported to impact 35% of the company’s workforce. 

“Every decision is made with the future of the business in mind,” a NOBULL spokesperson told FOS.

The most notable departure was Todd Meleney, the chief marketing officer who helped launch the brand’s identity alongside co-founders Michael Schaeffer and Marcus Wilson in 2015. The trio had been working together on other projects, Meleney says, before focusing their efforts on NOBULL.

“I absolutely love NOBULL and didn’t expect to leave at this point,” Meleney told FOS. “But I ultimately just made the decision that that was the best thing for me.”

New Company On Horizon

Meleney is now in the beginning stages of creating a new company with others who left NOBULL before the layoffs were made. 

“I’ve got an awesome team of early employees from NOBULL who are battle-tested, who decided to exit with me,” Meleney shared. “And we’re building towards launching something new [in] the back half of the year.” 

For Meleney, the move comes after his influential work in creating the NFL partnership as NOBULL continued to expand on the heels of a $500 million valuation from funding in 2021.

He says conversations about stepping down began in January, but he decided to stay on through the combine, and his transition began shortly thereafter.

“I’ve always had the ambition to build my own company,” Meleney said. “I always felt like my experience and the momentum at NOBULL would ultimately put me on a trajectory to do that. And while I would have expected that to happen later, it became clear to me that the best opportunity for me to continue with the momentum I had experienced through all of our partnerships and league deals and insane growth was now.”

Todd Meleney


With Meleney gone and NOBULL’s workforce downsized, a company spokesperson told FOS there has been zero impact to its commitment to current partners. Beyond the NFL deal, NOBULL is the title sponsor of the CrossFit Games and a sponsor of the PGA Tour.

An NFL spokesperson said that the league was pleased with NOBULL’s combine efforts this year and looks “forward to working together to continue to build the partnership.”

A PGA Tour spokesperson said it’s NOBULL activations were status quo for the remainder of this year but planning for next season has not started yet.

NOBULL says leadership changes have been ongoing discussions as the company works to streamline business and become more efficient. 

No replacement for Meleney or any other executives have been made but on LinkedIn, Sanjay Purohit is listed as NOBULL’s new chief operating officer, as of May. Purohit is also an executive with Accordion Partners, a private equity consulting firm.

“I think NOBULL is in a transitional state,” Meleney says. “And they’re optimizing the business for its next phase of maturity.”

No Hard Feelings

Meleney still holds equity in NOBULL and says he’s open to helping the company in the future.

“There were discussions about maintaining an ongoing relationship that at this point have not actualized,” he explained.

As for his relationship with Schaeffer and Wilson, Meleney will be “forever appreciative” of the opportunity they created for him and the belief they had in him. 

“We’re all focused on the opportunities and the priorities that are right in front of us and for them that’s at NOBULL and for me, that’s, building something new off the ground,” he said.

Meleney says his new effort has already started to do some consulting for what he termed as some “young and disruptive brands.”

But with one major career chapter done for now, Meleney still believes NOBULL can be an “iconic brand.”

“There’s a lot of smart people there,” he says. “And I hope that they’re able to achieve that.”

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