I.Q. [Innovation Quotient] award
Brew City Promotions Inc.
Innovation: Patented creative apparel
Clothing and textiles is not an industry people automatically associate with innovation, and yet Milwaukee-based Brew City Promotions Inc. continues to innovate and drive company growth.
The family-run business started back in 1986 and has grown from a small apparel operation to a world-class design and innovation firm that offers innovative apparel and promotional items on a B2B basis for the corporate and retail industry.
Brew City has patented two apparel products: a sweatshirt that contains a lined and insulated pocket that holds bottles; and its newest patent pending product, the Pop Top Tee, which contains a rubber encased bottle opener directly in the fabric.
In addition to creating custom clothing with these designs for its direct to consumer market, Brew City has sold these products wholesale to national brands like Walt Disney World, Nordstrom, Miller Brewing Co., Budweiser, Corona, The Gap and others.
“In an extremely competitive field, it is very difficult to differentiate your company from other competitors,” said George Keppler, vice president and co-owner of the company. “These products have pulled us to the top as innovators.”
According to Keppler, it’s not common to obtain patents on apparel, and most people in the industry were shocked when the company did it, but Keppler believes these products have driven Brew City’s success and helped its employees think, work and sell more creatively.
These products have added revenue to the company’s bottom line, but they’ve also added revenue through new accounts with representatives interested in seeing what else the company is working on.