Wichita, Kan. – Invista acquired European fiber producer Advansa’s specialty polyester assets. The agreement reverses Advansa’s licensed rights in Europe to two of Invista’s apparel brands, Coolmax and Thermolite. Through the deal, Invista does not acquire Advansa’s branded home textiles fiberfill business, its specialty fiber businesses for nonwovens and paper industries, or its manufacturing plant in Germany.
Rogers, Conn. – Rogers Corporation has signed with Backbone Media to provide public relations for its Poron XRD Protection Technology. The company's thin foam padding is used in Rawlings sporting goods, Bern ski and snowboard helmets, and other products. Brian Larabee, Rogers' director of marketing, said that the company decided to partner with Backbone to increase brand awareness and consumer understanding of the role that Poron XRD plays in outdoor products.
Bend, Ore. – Starting in December, doggy outdoor gear makers Ruffwear will be expanding its European offerings and adding new retailers across the continent. It will be relying on UK-based distributor Accapi, which already manages Ruffwear's retailers in the UK, France and Lithuania. The two companies have worked together successfully for the past three and a half years.
In 2013, Camelbak, the hydration brand, partnered with six large scale music/lifestyle festivals to provide free filtered water to all event attendees. These festival gatherings included Hangout Fest in Alabama, Governors Ball in NYC, Forecastle Festival in Louisville, all domestic stops for the Wanderlust Series, Lollapalooza in Chicago, and Austin City Limits in Austin, Texas. At each festival Camelbak staffs individual hydration stations that are equipped with flow meters allowing the brand to calculate how much water is poured, and therefore, how many disposable plastic water bottles are saved. The brand calculates that its efforts have offset over 1,000,000 disposable plastic water bottles at festivals in 2013.
Seattle, Wash. - Patagonia customers now have a chance to trade in their old (but still in good condition) gear as part of a new program that the company has slowly been rolling out. So far, four brand stores offer the service: Seattle, Portland, Chicago and Palo Alto, CA. Customers earn store credit for old shells, fleece, down and synthetic insulation, and ski and alpine pants in the new program, called Worn Wear.
The move is designed to broaden Patagonia's customer base, since the used items will be at a lower price point ($40 to $200) than typical Patagonia gear. The program also keeps the clothes out of landfills, which is in line with Patagonia's environmental stewardship goals.
Carlsbad, Calif. – Boardworks Surf has ended its three-year partnership with Boardworks Surf Canada, and will now directly manage Canadian distribution channels. All customer service, AR, marketing and planning will be handled out of Boardworks' home office in Carlsbad, Calif. The company will maintain a warehouse in Canada to ensure that key products are still delivered quickly, and will ship the rest from California.
Boardworks National Sales Manager Ryan Guay said that the direct link to retailers will allow the company to continue its growth in the Canadian SUP market and stay competitively priced. It will keep some of the Canadian sales reps, athletes and ambassadors through the transition.
Greensboro, N.C. – VF Corporation will create three new production centers in Alameda, Calif., Greensboro, Colo., and Stratham, New Hampshire. These centers will open in the first half of 2014. In Alameda, the center will create technical apparel; in Greensboro, the center will focus on jeans and in Stratham, the center will focus on footwear.