Fruit of the Loom, the parent company to Russell Athletic & Activewear, announced Thursday it was getting out of the team uniform business.
This announcement could open the door for some smaller uniform suppliers to move into the market space.
In a statement from Senior Vice-President for Brand Management with Russell Athletic & Activewear Scott Greene the immediate discontinuation of team uniform production was confirmed.
While Russell has been a trusted name in apparel for more than a century, it was the team uniform line production that fueled a meteoric rise from the 1970s through the mid-1990s.
Most industry followers say Russell Athletic was at its peak in 1992 when it signed a five-year contract with Major League Baseball teams to be the exclusive provider of uniforms. In 1995, Russell rode those team ties to reach a record $1.25 billion in sales. The company had 18,000 employees worldwide at that time.
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