The North Face fund awards $500,000 to kids' outdoor programs

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The North Face Explore FundAlameda, Calif. — The North Face Explore Fund has awarded $500,000 this year to 47 U.S. non-profit groups that work to get children outside and more engaged with outdoor recreation. In evaluating recipients, The North Face Explore Fund chose projects that use outdoor exploration as the catalyst for positive, personal or societal change; provide experiences that nurture an appreciation of the outdoors; or encourage participants to try new outdoor activities that allow outdoor exploration and adventure.

Vibram USA acquires its sole manufacturer

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vibram-logoConcord, Mass. — Vibram USA has acquired North Brookfield, Mass.-based Quabaug Corp., the U.S. manufacturer and distributor of Vibram's rubber soling products since 1965. Terms of the deal were not made public. The combined entity will now do business as Quabaug Vibram Innovation, allowing Vibram to focus on developing and commercializing North American products.

Microban to launch apparel odor capture technology

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Microban logoHuntersville, N.C. — Microban International Ltd. plans to next month introduce Scentry, the company's first odor capture product platform for apparel and footwear. It is based on patent-pending technology, which reduces odor by 99 percent and lasts through more than 50 home launderings, according to a company news release.

Mountain Hardwear president resigns, interim leader named

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Mountain HardwearRichmond, Calif. — Mountain Hardwear Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Columbia Sportswear Co., has named Scott Kerslake as interim brand president to replace Topher Gaylord, who resigned. Kerslake also will continue to serve as chief executive officer of another of Columbia Sportswear's brands, PrAna — a position he has held since 2009.

Patagonia leases more distribution space

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Patagonia WorksSparks, Nev. — Patagonia has leased 79,200 square feet of distribution space from Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. in a Sparks, Nev., industrial park. Reno, of which Sparks is a suburb, was already home to Patagonia's 171,000-square-foot main service and distribution center. The building received Gold Level Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification through the U.S. Green Building Council. Patagonia also has an outlet store in Reno.

Restructuring firm buys Tilley Endurables

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alex-tilleyLondon, England — Hilco Capital, a London-based restructuring firm, has bought Canadian hat maker Tilley Endurables with plans to expand the brand into new markets globally. “Alex Tilley has built a great business and a very strong brand around a phenomenal product over the last 30 years," said Paul McGowan, chief officer of Hilco Capital. "We’re delighted to pick up the mantle and draw on Hilco Capital’s expertise and resources to grow the business further and take the Tilley Hat to new markets around the world.”

ColdPruf's growth spurs new warehouse

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ColdPruf warehouseYadinville, N.C. – Indera Mills, parent company of ColdPruf, is expanding its logistics capabilities with construction of a 50,000-square-foot warehouse. When completed in early August, it will complement the company's existing facilities. The new warehouse will allow ColdPruf to increase inventory and accommodate growth of the brand.

VF Corp. promotes Steve Rendle to president, COO

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VF Corp. logoGreensboro, N.C. — VF Corp. has made a number of leadership changes within the company, including naming Steve Rendle president and chief operating officer. He also was elected to VF’s Board of Directors. Rendle, a 16-year veteran at VF, had served as vice president and group president — Outdoor and Action Sports Americas. 

Intel acquires Recon Instruments

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Recon JetVancouver, British Columbia — Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel, probably best known for making computer chips, has acquired Recon Instruments, a manufacturer of head-up display modules for ski goggles. The Vancouver, British Columbia-based firm also recently launched Jet, which combines a heads-up display with a Recon-designed sunglass frame and polarized lenses.

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