No one can stop an idea whose time has come.
It would be safe to say that Collegiate Licensed Apparel has been the very heart of our business since day one. In 1987, two broke students at Michigan State University, Jeff Fenech and Jeff Radway changed their fate when they hatched a brilliantly simple plan to sell ‘Michigan State Beach Club’ t-shirts around campus. To their amazement, the novelty of those fresh new local MSU t-shirts flew off the shelves and soon caught the attention of other local retailers who gave them new orders that pushed their capabilities to the limit. Both young and stubborn, the ‘Jeffs’ adopted a never say die attitude and met all those new challenges head on, becoming a driving force for success. After a stint in Florida the ‘Jeffs’ returned to their roots in Lansing, Michigan and with the help of a strong new partner, Pete Ruhala, J.America, Inc. was born.
Nearly 25 years later, J. America has grown into one of the largest collegiate and custom apparel suppliers in the United States today. We are currently ranked as the 8th largest CLC apparel licensee in the country (headwear & sideline apparel removed). J. America is also one of the top collegiate apparel suppliers and has built a reputation with buyers for quality, delivery, and innovative design.
In addition, J. America was recently awarded a 10 year, exclusive non-sideline apparel contract with The Ohio State University, in what is believed to be the single largest non-sideline apparel deal in the history of the collegiate licensed market. OSU arrived at this landmark decision based upon the strength of J. America, it’s commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility, quality, financial considerations, and our commitment to building a brand that is an asset to the collegiate team licensed business.
In 2013, as a result of our landmark deal with The Ohio State University, J. America opened two new facilities: Our design and development studio in the apparel mecca of Columbus, OH and our Global Sourcing office in Hong Kong. Both additions boast decades of sports licensed experience and have reenergized our passion for licensed product.
Today, we at J. America continue to stand firm in our commitment to building strong Collegiate Licensed product and growing licensing revenue.
In 2013, J. America made its biggest move to date by partnering with THE Ohio State University for 10 years as an exclusive apparel licensee.
The Buckeyes chose J. America as an exclusive provider in large part to the commitment to their customer service standards. This meant opening a design studio in Columbus, Ohio dedicated to creating Ohio State apparel and headwear.
And so, the Columbus Design Center was born, so close to campus you can see Ohio Stadium through the windows. J. America then drafted an All-Star team of designers
to create Buckeye gear for the next decade.
|1992||J America is founded|
|1995||J America expands into national collegiate licenses|
|1999||J America builds offices and decoration facility in Webberville, Michigan|
|2001||J America launches Retail (now TLG) Division|
|2007||J America launches Wholesale Blanks Division|
|2008||J America signs exclusive license for John Deere apparel & headwear in North America|
|2009||J America launches Outdoor Division & opens North Carolina office|
|2011||J America opens distribution center in Fowlerville, Michigan|
|2012||J America expands into the military market|
|2013||Ohio State announces exclusive 10-year licensed apparel, retail partnership with J America|
|2013||J America opens Columbus Design Center|
|2013||J America opens Global Sourcing office in Hong Kong|
|2013||J America signs exclusive license for Farm Boy Farm Girl brand|
|2014||J America launches new site|