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Kitsbow Adopts Lean Manufacturing To Eliminate Waste and Enhance Product Quality

Published November 26, 2018

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50 percent of Kitsbow products are now made in North America, with 23 percent made “just in time” by Kitsbow in California.

PETALUMA, Calif. (Nov. 14, 2018)—Kitsbow, maker of premium cycling and outdoor clothing has announced today that it has adopted a lean manufacturing model, now sourcing 50-percentof its styles in North America and making 23-percent of its stylesin Petaluma, California. The statistics include all of the styles offered in 2018.

“We have always wanted to deliver exactly what the customer wants, right when they want it, something the industry's bulk manufacturing model does very poorly” explains Zander Nosler, Kitsbow Founder and Co-CEO. “Adopting Lean principles not only makes us more efficient while reducing our waste, but we’ll also have the

flexibility to focus on what makes our products great - a precise balance of technical performance, timeless design, and impeccable tailoring.”

Kitsbow’s philosophy embraces the time-tested “lean manufacturing” model, where product is made just before it is purchased, rather than purchased in bulk nine to twelve months in advance. “The apparel industry is notorious for shredding as much as 30-percentof the finished goods it creates when those bulk purchases don’t sell,” explained David Billstrom, Co-CEO of Kitsbow. “Our goal is to minimize waste, by never making a product in volume that didn’t sell.”

As the manufacturing processes are streamlined, Kitsbow will be able to be more nimble and better respond to fluctuations in demand, resulting in fewer delays and better lead times. As a company that prides itself on unbeatable craftsmanship, this manufacturing model is enabling Kitsbow to further perfect the quality and technical properties of each style and design.

Additionally, strategic partnerships such as Kitsbow’s collaboration with Polartecand Mechanix Gloveshave allowed the brand to continue innovating on relatively short lead times (compared to industry standards). Kitsbow will roll out 29 new or updated products in the next three months. Seven of those new products will be made in-house by Kitsbow, which doubles the number of SKUs that Kitsbow already manufactures on site in Petaluma.

The Kitsbow styles already made in the U.S. include the Icon Shirt V2, Radiator Tee V2, Delta Tee V2, Drifter Jean, Origin Base Short, Ventilated Base Short V2, Geysers Jersey 2.0, Coleman Valley Bib Knicker, Power Wool Base Layer, PowerWool Performance Knickerand select styles of arm and knee warmers as well as riding boxer shorts.

Learn more about Kitsbow’s manufacturing efforts over on the blog:

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