Velcro

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Velcro Companies
Privately held company
Industry Manufacturing
Headquarters United Kingdom
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Products Hook and loop fasteners
Number of employees
2,500
Website www.velcro.com

Velcro Companies is a privately held company that produces a series of mechanical based fastening products, including fabric hook and loop fasteners, under the brand name "Velcro".

History[edit]

Swiss electrical engineer George de Mestral invented his first touch fastener when, in 1941, he went for a walk in the woods and wondered why Burdock seeds cling to his coat and dog. He discovered it could be turned into something useful.[1] He patented it in 1955 and subsequently refined and developed its practical manufacture until its commercial introduction in the late 1950s.

The fastener consisted of two components: a lineal fabric strip with tiny hooks that could "mate" with another fabric strip with smaller loops, attaching temporarily, until pulled apart.[2] Initially made of cotton, which proved impractical,[3] the fastener was eventually constructed with nylon and polyester.[4]

De Mestral gave the name Velcro, a portmanteau of the French words velours ("velvety fabric") and crochet ("hook"),[5][6] to his invention as well as his company, which continues to manufacture and market the fastening system.

Humphrey Cripps began investing in Velcro Companies in the 1960s. In 2009, the company was taken private by a private equity firm linked to the Cripps family.[7][8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Suddath, Claire (15 June 2010). "A Brief History of: Velcro" – via content.time.com. 
  2. ^ "Velcro". Merriam Webster. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  3. ^ Strauss, Steven D. (December 2001). The Big Idea: How Business Innovators Get Great Ideas to Market. Kaplan Business. pp. 15–pp.18. ISBN 978-0-7931-4837-0. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  4. ^ Schwarcz, Joseph A. (October 2003). Dr. Joe & What You Didn't Know: 99 Fascinating Questions About the Chemistry of Everyday Life. Ecw Press. p. 178. ISBN 978-1-55022-577-8. Retrieved 2008-05-09. But not every Velcro application has worked ... A strap-on device for impotent men also flopped. 
  5. ^ "Velcro." The Oxford English Dictionary. 2nd ed. 1989.
  6. ^ Stephens, Thomas (2007-01-04). "How a Swiss invention hooked the world". swissinfo.ch. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  7. ^ "History of Velcro Industries N.V. – FundingUniverse". Retrieved 2016-02-08. 
  8. ^ Kowitt, Beth (2013). "Velcro Just Wants Some Closure". Fortune. 168 (1): 52–1NULL. ISSN 0015-8259. 

External links[edit]