Bailey featured in the Spring Summer 2013 issue of GQ Magazine.
Hearing is Believing!
Launching Autumn/Winter 2011, Kangol has partnered with headphone company Aerial7 to create an innovative collaboration that actually allows you to listen to your favorite music inside your hat!
Aerial 7 has developed an ultra slim superior quality Sound Disk that is inserted into specially constructed Kangol jacquard earlaps. The Sound Disk system incorporates a microphone, which is compatible with mobile devices such as the iPhone and Blackberry. This allows music aficionados to hear their favorite songs without dealing with the hassle of earphones.
Aerial7 was founded on the idea that sound can be combined with eye-catching design. Devoted to DJ culture, art, fashion, and action sports, Aerial7 is the perfect complement to Kangol, who maintains a reputation for crafting world-class headwear for creative pioneers. Established in Cumbria, England and adopted by the trailblazers of hip-hop in New York City, Kangol is a cultural fusion, taking the best of British heritage, retro flavor, and mixing it with future fashion.
The Kangol x Aerial7 collection will be available in very limited quantities only at Limelight Marketplace in New York City.
For more information on Kangol:
Jasmine G. Desai
Siren Public Relations
The ESOP Association Announces 2011 Silver ESOP Award Recipients
April 11, 2011 (Washington, DC) — The ESOP Association has presented 41 corporate members of the Association with a Silver ESOP Award to recognize their work in sustaining their ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) for 25 years or more. This year, the Silver ESOP Awards are being presented to companies that will be celebrating 25 years or more as an ESOP company in 2011.
This is the fourth year the Silver ESOP Awards have been presented by the Association. In 2008, 117 corporate members were presented with the first annual Silver ESOP Awards, in 2009, 12 companies were honored, and in 2010, 22 members were highlighted. To be named a Silver ESOP Award recipient, a company must be a member of The ESOP Association and have an ESOP in place for 25 years or more.
“It is my pleasure to present these 41 companies with the 2011 Silver ESOP Award for excellence in sustaining their ESOP for 25 years,” said ESOP Association President J. Michael Keeling. “The sustaining of their employee-ownership structures demonstrates preserving locally controlled jobs in today’s global economy is more likely when employees are owners.”
2011 Silver ESOP Award Recipients:
Apache Hose & Belting, Inc., Cedar Rapids, IA
B & I Contractors, Inc., Fort Myers, FL
Bollman Hat Company, Adamstown, PA
Bolton & Co., Pasadena, CA
Caltrol, Inc., Las Vegas, NV
CCI Systems, Inc., Iron Mountain, MI
Community Financial Services ESOP, Benton, KY
Cramer Products, Inc., Gardner, KS
Dealey, Renton & Associates, Oakland, CA
DeKalb Feeds, Inc., Rock Falls, IL
Dickinson Press Inc., Grand Rapids, MI
Durden Banking Co., Inc., Twin City, GA
Employee Owned Holdings, Inc., Houston, TX
First National Bank of Bemidji, Bemidji, MN
Foldcraft Company, Kenyon, MN
Follett Corporation, Easton, PA
Foxx Equipment Company, Kansas City, MO
Gulf Industries, Inc., Mandeville, LA
Horizon Bancorp, Michigan City, IN
Insurance Associates, Inc., Rockville, MD
Jones-Hamilton Co., Walbridge, OH
Mayville Engineering Company, Inc., Mayville, WI
McNaughton-McKay Electric Company, Madison Heights, MI
Melton Machine & Control Company, Washington, MO
MidSouth Building Supply, Inc., Springfield, VA
Oswald Companies, Cleveland, OH
Overton Chicago Gear Company, Addison, IL
Perry Corporation, Lima, OH
Recology, San Francisco, CA
Reell Precision Manufacturing Corp., Saint Paul, MN
Reflexite Corporation, Avon, CT
Rieth-Riley Construction Co., Inc., Goshen, IN
Sentry Equipment Corp., Oconomowoc, WI
Shamrock Bancshares, Inc., Coalgate, OK
The Mosser Group, Fremont, OH
Web Industries, Inc., Marlborough, MA
Wikoff Color Corporation, Fort Mill, SC
Winona Agency, Inc., Winona, MN
Worzalla Publishing Company, Stevens Point, WI
Xtek, Inc., Cincinnati, OH
Zandex, Inc., Zanesville, OH
All 192 Silver ESOP Award recipients will be honored at The ESOP Association’s Annual Conference in May and highlighted at the 20th Annual Awards Banquet held on the evening of May 11th.
The ESOP Association is the national trade association for companies with employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and the leading voice in America for employee ownership. The core cause of The ESOP Association is the belief that employee ownership will improve American competitiveness, increase productivity through greater employee participation, and strengthen our free enterprise economy. For more information: http://www.esopassociation.org.
ADAMSTOWN — As the oldest hat maker in America, Bollman Hat Company has fashionably fitted the heads of Americans and customers around the globe with the best collection of headwear in the world for over 140 years.
But company President & CEO Don Rongione knows the Lancaster County-based operation needs more than its heritage to survive in the fiercely competitive world of hat manufacturing.
“I believe it is the culture that has been created here, and that is our culture of employee ownership,” Rongione said about what it takes to be in business for more than a century. “Our employee/owners feel a greater sense of responsibility, accountability, ownership and commitment to what we do, which I believe goes back to before we launched the Employee Stock Ownership program in 1985. I think our customers sense that greater pride and ownership when they talk to our people and it creates a certain determination and resiliency that we are going to get through whatever comes our way.”
Its core mission of making quality headwear the one constant that has remained the same since Bollman was founded in 1868, the company’s management team has the fluidity to adapt to the rapidly evolving changes in the marketplace, Rongione said.
“We have made changes when change has been necessary according to the economy, our industry and what is happening around the world,” Rongione said. “We have to be good stewards and we have to develop strategies that not only help us survive, but to thrive again. We are a much different company today than what we were even when I arrived 29 years ago.”
One company strategy is to create and acquire brands which capture customer loyalty, according to Rongione. Many of the company’s brands have been purchased over the last two decades, he added.
“With a continuation of innovate design, great styling and performance products, we will build upon that loyalty,” Rongione said. “As the demand for our brands grow, we have and will continue to move into other accessory categories.”
A tribute to the company’s longevity can be traced to the cross-generational appeal of Bollman to its employees. Bollman currently employs 300 people, of which 200 are based in Pennsylvania at its half-million-square-foot manufacturing plant and another 100 on four continents.
“I’d like to think that this is a good place to work, even if the jobs aren’t always that easy,” Rongione said. “The company has tried to offer continual employment, we treat our employees well and fairly and we have provided solid employment opportunities for families.”
Another competitive strategy is royalty arrangements with celebrities and sports figures. Bollman’s latest royalty arrangement is with R & B singer Ne-Yo, who just signed an agreement with the company in the last few weeks.
Other celebrities whose heads have adorned Bollman-made hats over the years include Roy Rogers, who visited the plant in the 1960s, seven-time rodeo champion Trevor Brazile, rap artists Run DMC, golfer Juan “Chi-Chi” Rodriguez, rock musician Carlos Santana and eight different U.S. Olympic teams.
Editor’s Note: Team PA, at the request of the Department of Community and Economic Development and Sen. Mike Brubaker, R-Lancaster, honored 10 companies of the more than 3,000 around the commonwealth who have been in business for at least a century. This is the first in a series of periodic articles of the companies recognized at that event.
For more information on Bollman Hat Company, visit bollmanhats.com.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Paula Calvert
THE BOLLMAN HAT COMPANY SIGNS EXCLUSIVE HEADWEAR LICENSE WITH TREVOR BRAZILE’S RELENTLESS BRAND
(January, 2011 New York, NY): Trevor Brazile, America’s #1 All Around Cowboy has signed an exclusive headwear licensing deal with The Bollman Hat Company under Brazile’s Relentless brand. In the terms of this license, The Bollman Hat Company, under the Bailey Western brand, will produce two seasonal headwear collections per year. The products, both in straw and felt, feature new custom external branding and key shapes that compliment other Relentless brand products. Autumn/Winter fur felts will be available in 5X, 8X, 10X and 30X qualities and range from $160- $430 at retail. Spring/Summer straws will be available in 7X, 10X and 20X qualities and range from $70- $110 at retail. Bailey has also commissioned Molly Crabapple, renowned burlesque artist and author, to create a custom illustration of Trevor Brazile to be used in linings and packaging.
“My Relentless brand of products is based on the tools I use everyday to be the best cowboy I can be. It was a natural fit to team up with Bailey to produce the Relentless hat line. Bailey is known for the highest quality products with a tremendous amount of attention to detail. Their brand position in the market place, and their understanding of what it takes to be the best hat brand in the world are why Relentless and Bailey will set the industry standard for western style headwear. I am extremely excited and honored to team up with Bailey; look for the exciting new Relentless Hats to hit stores soon.” (Trevor Brazile)
The Bollman Hat Company has been producing the highest quality felt and straw products since 1868. Their quality and unparalleled craftsmanship are second to none in the industry. The Bailey brand has been crafting quality Western products since 1922 and so it is a natural progression to work with Trevor Brazile and his Relentless brand.
“We are absolutely delighted to be partnering once again with Trevor and his growing brand Relentless. He is clearly a unique leader in his field, which fits perfectly with the positioning of the Bailey Western brand as a market leader with a clear point of difference. We look forward to developing great product with Trevor and to supporting him in his ambitions as the World’s Number One All-Around Cowboy.” (Christopher Swan, Chief Branding Officer)
Trevor Brazile is America’s leading rodeo cowboy. He has a record-breaking eight All-Around World Championships. His reputation is acknowledged among fans and fellow cowboys as being the most dedicated, hardworking and relentless cowboy in history. Brazile’s Relentless brand is based on the spirit of people who work hard every day and persevere in the face of obstacles and challenges. Relentless believes our word is a commitment. We believe in following our passion while placing faith and family above personal accomplishments. We respect our cowboy heritage and the American dream.
The first collection of Relentless by Bailey hats will be available Spring/Summer 2011.
Manufacturers Working To Save American Jobs
By Amanda Earing, News Editor
Manufacturing.Net – February 12, 2010
In an economy where manufacturers are struggling to stay afloat, some are also fighting to find ways to keep their workers employed. Save An American Job (SAAJ) is a branding and networking initiative designed to do just that.
Save an American Job, founded by Don Rongione, CEO and President of the Bollman Hat Company, is a proactive initiative to encourage more Americans to buy American-made products and help manufacturers prevent job losses in the industry.
Rongione created SAAJ as result of the painful process he’s experienced of having to lay off people that have been loyal to his company for decades.
“We’ve had to let go of employees that have been with the company for well over 30 years. We couldn’t be loyal in return because we didn’t have sufficient orders to support production levels — largely due to low-cost imports from foreign manufacturers.”
In fact, the loss of manufacturing jobs in the U.S. has a direct impact on the U.S. economy. According to the most recent Labor Department report, 27,000 U.S. manufacturing jobs were lost this past December, adding to the more than 5.5 million manufacturing jobs that have disappeared over the past decade.
It is written that for every one manufacturing job, there are at least five others lost from the chain of workers — truck drivers, accountants, R&D, maintenance, and others — who in some way support the manufacturing industry. As a result, over 30 million jobs have been lost over the last decade due to the manufacturing decline in the U.S.
SAAJ’s goal is to unify like-minded American companies through branding and consumer education on how and where to buy American, why it is important and what the rebuilding of a strong manufacturing base in the U.S. will mean in terms of not only saving jobs, but establishing long-term economic stability and independence.
Since its conception last July, the organization has been steadily attracting more companies to its membership. To become a member Rongione says that companies must be committed to saving jobs and keeping manufacturing in the U.S. A membership in the organization gives companies the use of logos that help promote their products as American made.
How is the Save An American Job logo different than using a “Made In USA” logo?
The FTC “Made in USA” standard requires that “all or virtually all” of the product is made in America. Rongione argues that in today’s global economy, it isn’t feasible for many manufacturers to make a 100 percent American made product. Instead, his focus is on keeping as much of the manufacturing in the U.S., thus saving American jobs.
“Save An American Jobs logos can be used on products in which at least 60 percent of costs are incurred, and final assembly occurs in the U.S. You might not be able to say ‘Made in USA’, but you can say you produce in the U.S. and comply with the Save An American Job standard,” says Rongione.
The Save An American Job organization even welcomes foreign manufacturers with U.S. factories as members — as long as they are producing in the U.S. and adhere to keeping jobs here.
In addition to full use of the SAAJ branding license that highlights a manufacturer’s promise to American jobs, other benefits to members include strength in numbers. The more manufacturers that become members, the more they’ll be able to build awareness of the cause. In addition, members will be able to network and exchange ideas on ways to remain cost-effective in a global economy.
Michael Araten, CEO and President of K’NEX, a manufacturer of children’s toys and a member of SAAJ, says that through networking he hopes to educate other manufacturers on the real costs of doing business overseas and help them bring jobs back to America.
“We joined SAAJ because we’ve been focusing on moving more of our business out of China and back to the U.S. We hope to share our own success story with others and demonstrate the true costs of doing business overseas compared with making the product here in America,” says Araten.
While the labor rate may be substantially lower in China – maybe 1/14 that of the U.S. — Save An American Job stresses that lead times, inventory tariffs, quality control risks, port fees and more can make the cost of doing business overseas much more expensive than manufacturing in the U.S.
“When you walk someone through the total cost of the finished goods from the supply chain standpoint, it can be up to 20 percent cheaper to build in the U.S. It has been very eye-opening for people we’ve been talking to,” says Araten.
Through networking with other companies in the Save An American Job program, Araten wants to share with others how moving business back into the U.S. can be beneficial to everyone. In fact, K’NEX’s finished goods will be up to 60 percent American-made by the end of 2010 and will increase jobs at its U.S. facilities.
There are other benefits to keeping jobs and your business in the U.S. as well.
“What we’re promoting is that not only does the initiative save jobs, but from a consumer perspective they are getting a superior product because it’s safer and more durable. It’s also more environmentally friendly as products produced in the States consume less energy when transported to market,” says Rongione.
The initiative also focuses on educating consumers to look beyond price. Rongione says manufacturers that are keep their business here have to distinguish themselves by quality, durability, craftsmanship, safety and energy efficiency.
“We’re unlikely to be a low-cost provider in the marketplace so we have to educate consumers that our product is superior and the value in the long run is greater for all those factors mentioned. Hopefully the ability to sustain the manufacturing base in this country, the middle class and jobs will also be a great motivator for consumers,” says Rongione.
But Rongione says educating consumers is a long-term process that will involve recruiting more manufacturers to become members as those companies will decide on the strategies for Save An American Job and help fund those initiatives.
For more information on Save An American Job, visit www.saveanamericanjob.com
Adamstown, PA &emdash; The Bollman Hat Company has announced its acquisition of the Ignite® brand. Ignite, founded in England by Neill Thompson in 2002, is best known for top quality ski, snowboard, surf and streetwear beanies and hats. Ignite products are sold through a number of leading stores in Europe with distributors in France, Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Finland, Iceland, Norway plus the UK at present.
Neill Thompson, Founder and Managing Director, will remain as Global Managing Director and will focus his efforts on brand building and marketing in Europe and launching the brand in the United States. Thompson, a passionate snowboarder for over 15 years and keen surfer since re-locating in 2002 to the UK’s surf capital; Newquay, commented “My inspiration to launch my own brand within the lifestyle market in which I had been living and for which I had, and still have, a massive passion, was to create a brand that I was to remain with throughout the rest of my career and beyond”.
Thompson started Ignite from his garage in Cornwall, England in 2002. “From garage brand to international brand, Ignite has had a great launch and we will help grow it first in the U.S. and then Australia, Asia and throughout the other world markets” commented Don Rongione, President & CEO of Bollman Hat Company. Ignite is entrenched in a lifestyle not fully covered by any existing Bollman brand. “We are very excited about where this brand will take us.”
“Ignite embraces my philosophy and passions: a defiant, independent, approach to life and fashion with a load of fun thrown in.” said Thompson.
Bollman Hat Company, founded in 1868, is America’s oldest hat maker and has the strongest collection of brands in the industry including: Bailey®, Country Gentleman®, Eddy Bros.®, Betmar®, Plaza Suite®, Helen Kaminski® and Pantropic®. Bollman also is the exclusive worldwide licensee for Kangol® and Timberland® Headwear.