Graco (baby products)
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (July 2015)|
Graco is an American baby products company, owned and operated by Newell Rubbermaid, now based in Atlanta, Georgia. It was founded in 1942 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania by Russell Gray and Robert Cone (hence the name) as Graco Metal Products, a company that fabricated machine and car parts. Rex Thomas (one of two engineers hired to come up with a sustainable product) watched his wife sitting on the porch, rocking their baby in a swing with a string tied to it, while she read a book. Rex went into work the next day and said “why don’t we make an automatic baby swing.” After 18 months of research and development, the Swyngnomatic - the world’s first wind-up, automatic baby swing—was born in 1955, designed by company engineer Dave Saint. In 1987 the company pioneered the invention of the Pack N' Play Portable Playard, the world’s first portable playard (designed by Nate Saint, Dave Saint’s son).
In 1998, Graco acquired Century, a car seat manufacturer and introduced the SnugRide infant car seat, which has become America’s top-selling infant car seat line. Century actually introduced the travel system where a car seat could fit on a stroller for easy transportation. That same year, Graco was acquired by Rubbermaid (the company became Newell Rubbermaid in 1999). In 2002, Graco launched the TurboBooster, a booster seat designed to help parents stay in compliance with many states’ passage of laws requiring children to stay in a car seat longer. In 2007, the company purchased established German baby product brand, Teutonia. The same year, the Nautilus® 3-in-1car seat debuted, earning the “Best Bet” designation from Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Then, in 2008, Graco acquired Aprica Kassai®, the number one selling baby brand in Japan. In 2014, Graco acquired American baby brand, Baby Jogger.
Graco offers products including car seats, travel systems, strollers, high chairs, playards and baby swings.