Howies

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Howies
Traded as howies
Industry Outdoor apparel, Sporting goods
Founded 1995
Founder David and Clare Hieatt
Headquarters Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire[1], Wales
Products Clothing
Website howies.co.uk

Howies is a clothing company based in west Wales. The company was founded in 1995 and produces eco-friendly T-shirts, jeans and sportswear, with the aim of having ethically correct practices.[2][3] Howies use natural fabrics as alternatives to petrochemical-derived modern fabrics, including organic cotton, Merino wool and recycled cotton.[4][5] Howies T-shirts often have images or slogans with political or environmental themes and are screen printed by hand in a workshop located at the brand headquarters.[5]

Brand[edit]

The Howies brand has a strong identity within many UK active sports, notably mountain biking, surfing and skateboarding, and has sponsored a number of athletes in these disciplines. It has made a number of special edition products associated with the Howies brand, notably with Curtis Bikes who continue to offer Howies blue as a standard colour option on many of their bikes. The company is particularly well known for its T-shirt designs, notably the classic logo design as well as 9 bikes, CCTV, Life*, Blood Donor and Home Work. The Howies name is often written in lowercase - the company's preferred style.

History[edit]

Howies was founded by Clare and David Hieatt in 1995. The name "Howies" is derived from Clare's maiden name of "Howells".[4][6] Howies first marketing and team manager was Jeff Boardman 1996 - 2001. Branding expert Mark Simmons was Managing Director from 1999-2001. The company relocated from London to Wales in 2001[7][8] and the company's first proper mail order catalogue is produced.[8]

In 2003, Levi Strauss & Co. threatened to sue Howies over the placement of a logo bearing tab on the rear right buttock pocket of their jeans. The Howies Tab is grey, the Levis Tab is Red.[9]

In December 2006, the Hieatts sold the company to The Timberland Company.[7][10] In November 2008, Howies was cited as the 6th most 'recession-proof' company in the UK.[11] In September 2009, David Hieatt, one of Howies' founders, mentioned on Twitter that he was due to leave the company at the end of October 2009.[12] In December 2011, Howies closed its London shop, which was situated on Carnaby Street.[13]

In January 2012, Howies' management team announced that they had purchased the company back and that Howies would continue to operate from Cardigan as an independent company.[14]

References[edit]

External links[edit]