Sometimes it pays to be a small, mom and pop retailer; or in this case, a husband and wife business. Jeff and Lynette Damir own a small Seattle company called Swaddle Designs, which today won the first ever license to produce Angry Birds children’s clothing, taking the popular online game into the apparel business. Angry Birds is a video game that industry experts say has been downloaded more than 500 billion times since it first hit the cyber waves back in 2009. The Angry Bird franchise of products, which include t-shirts, toys and backpacks may already be worth over $1 billion.
The new line of children’s clothing with the Angry Bird logo that will be produced by Swaddle Designs will feature baby body suits, blankets, swaddle and burping cloths. The Damir company has been in business for the last ten year and has 20 employees. Annual revenues to date have been in the neighborhood of $5 million but now the owners expect that sales could double with the addition of the Angry Bird line of children’s clothing. Both Jeff and Lynette say that it is important for tto produce their products in the United State despite the hurdles that have to be overcome when doing so versus manufacturing overseas in countries like China, India, and Vietnam, where the rules are not quite as rigid and the regulations much more lax. Their products now can be found in many high-end boutiques as well as on Amazon.com.
The idea for adding the baby cloths with the Angry Bird logo comes from the youngest Damir, their daughter, who was playing the popular video game on her new iPad one day when Jeff Damir was keeping an eye on her. After finding out a little more about the game and the popularity of it, Jeff approached the company that produces it, Rovio, and pitched a line of baby cloths to the video game maker. The told Jeff that his timing was perfect and that they had been considering a business partner to put out a line of cloths with the Angry Bird logo. The owners of Rovio liked the designs that Damir sent as samples as well as the quality of the products they were already producing. Now they are bracing for a surge in sales and hoping that they can keep up. It will be a good problem to have to deal with.
You really do find that a little creativity and an idea can go a long way. I hope that this company can do well and that they will be able to produce most if not all of their products in the U.S. From the sounds of it I think they will make every effort to do so.