ASI Continues To Spearhead Hurricane Relief Efforts In the wake of Hurricane Charley’s devastation on the west coast of Florida, Hurricane Francis now threatens the state again just three weeks later. Although it's not yet known where the storm will make landfall, residents along the southeast coast are already being advised to evacuate, and businesses are boarding up in anticipation. In light of this new threat, ASI asks distributors and suppliers affected by Francis to post updated information at www.asicentral.com so colleagues and customers can check your status.
Concerning the outpouring of support for victims of Hurricane Charley, ASI president Tim Andrews says he's overwhelmed by how quickly the industry responded to ASI’s call to action. Dozens of ASI-member suppliers and distributors have shipped literally tons of clothing, household items and school supplies that have since been delivered to disaster-relief organizations. Best estimates are that the dollar value of goods is well over $500,000 at this point, and cash contributions to the Red Cross are rapidly approaching six figures, including $25,000 from ASI.
"Since donations are still being made, it isn’t possible to individually thank the many contributors to this cause," Andrews says. "But I want to express my personal gratitude and admiration for your kindness and your contributions. For many of us involved, it has renewed our belief in the goodness of people and reminded us, once again, of the compassion of our industry."
Broder Buys NES Broder Bros Co., parent firm of Top 40 suppliers Alpha Shirt Co. (asi/34408) and Broder (asi/42090) has acquired NES Clothing CO. (asi/72808). Terms have not been revealed at this point. NES will continue to operate as a separate company, maintaining its ASI number, catalog, customer-service set-up, Web site and sales force. In addition, NES CEO Michael Rosow will remain as a consultant, and Ronald Nathan, former NES executive vice president, has been named NES president. The nature of the acquisition should have minimal, if any, effect on NES customers. “NES’s strength in New England is a great compliment to Broder’s national scale,” says Vince Tyra, Broder Bros. CEO. Adds Rosow: “We look forward to maintaining the NES brand and serving our customers even better than we have in the past, with the additional support of the Broder organization.”
Lee Acquires Precision Lee Communications Inc. (asi/66846) has acquired Precision Line Industries (asi/79336) in a complete buyout. Terms were not disclosed. “One of our objectives in 2004 was to expand our services and products,” says David Saatzer, Lee Communications vice president. “Adding the PLI line has done that.” Lee will market both lines to the industry. Precision founder Scott Wong says he’s encouraged to see the commitment Lee is making to build on PLI's 20-year legacy as the promotional mouse pad supplier.
Bienne Purchases K&R Instruments Bienne USA (asi/40483), a division of ESP Wholesale Canada, announced today that it has acquired Florida-based K&R Instruments (asi/63770). Terms were not disclosed. Merrick Falkenstein, president of Bienne USA, says that K&R's name and ASI number will be retained. Bienne will continue to ship from Amherst, NY, and K&R will ship from Orlando, FL. "The current K&R sales force, customer service representatives and production crew will make a great addition to the Bienne team as we continue our growth into the future," notes Falkenstein.
Aakron Rule To Expand Its Tennessee Plant Aakron Rule Corp. (asi/30270) is spending $1.3 million to add machinery and inventory in an expansion of its operations in Bakewell, TN, according to Chattanoogan.com. The expansion will create about 50 new jobs over the next five years, company officials say. Aakron will also build a new warehouse and expand manufacturing and imprinting capability at its existing 48,000-square-foot plant.
�� Norwood Finishes Restructuring Norwood Promotional Products has completed a corporate debt and equity restructuring. The new financing includes a multimillion-dollar revolving credit facility with Bank of America, N.A. Proceeds from the facility will be used to provide additional liquidity, working capital and funding to support the firm’s continued growth. Tom Roller, Norwood president/CEO, notes that “ Norwood should now be positioned to refine and expand its business as one of the world’s leading suppliers.” Additionally, an article in the August 26 Indianapolis Star noted that Norwood is in an expansion mode and may well double its headquarters staff within a year.
RomanArt Gets Certified RomanArt Customwear Inc. (asi/311540) recently achieved minority business certification from the state of Indiana . The firm was founded in 1996 by Roman Perez and Kurt Kopack.
ASI CreditConnect ASI collects over 500,000 transactions every year and over 15,000 past due account records every month on all ASI distributors. Over 1,100 industry suppliers report on the distributors they do business with. That information is what drives the most accurate and up-to-date credit service available to the promotional products industry…
The transactional data in ASI CreditConnect is the only industry-specific credit information of its kind and is unrivaled by any other service. You are able to make safe credit decisions based on the experiences of your industry peers. But that’s not all. With CreditConnect, you are able to do so much more:
Assign a ranking to all distributors, so your decisions are quicker and easier than ever before.
Monitor the pay habits of existing and prospective customers to be sure you are doing business with credible distributors.
Search distributors in particular locations for prospecting and marketing efforts.
Give everyone in your company access to the credit and marketing information they need.
OF THE WEEK
Imported Polo Shirt from Pacific Fleece (asi/75647) Imported Polo Shirts, style PS 02, are made from 100% ring-spun cotton 7.5-oz. pique with a three-button placket, taped welt collar, banded sleeves, split tail and back-sewn oval yoke. Choose from sizes S-3X in white, black, navy, khaki, gray, red, royal, hunter and orange.
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