According to Fortune magazine (Jan 13, 2014), American Giant (based in San Francisco) is bringing apparel manufacturing jobs back to the United States. In 2011, Baird Winthrop (a former investment banker) decided to start making American-made hoodies. By cutting out wholesalers, American giant sales directly to consumers from their website. While labor costs are high in United States, rework is low, and quality is very high. Winthrop says you just can’t get the kind of quality you find in America overseas. In addition, he actually saves about $.75 a yard on fabric by buying it in the US. He says American people prefer to buy products that were made in America, and are willing to pay a slight premium for those products.
A quick look at the American giant website reveals that went for up is not only selling hoodies but is also selling high-quality T-shirts at a special price of five for $89. This works out to about $17.80 per shirt, which seems a little high on the surface, but considering their normally priced at $24.50 per shirt, you might just be getting a bargain. In addition, they offer free shipping, and… if you refer a friend, you can get $15 off your order. If you happen to have a coupon code, just answer it when you place your order, and get some additional money off your purchase.
American manufacturing seems to be an ever-growing trend. More and more companies are bringing manufacturing jobs back to the United States. Unfortunately, the only thing stopping American manufacturing now is massive amounts of government bureaucracy and incredibly high tax rates. In addition, health-care entitlements, and their associated costs will keep most manufacturing jobs overseas for the foreseeable future. If Republicans take back the legislative and executive branches of government, look for American manufacturing to explode within its borders.
The video below shows an interview with Baird Winthrop talking about the start up of his American company.