L.A. Mayor Congratulates American Apparel on Economic Milestones
At a press conference attended by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Los Angeles-based American Apparel, operator of the largest garment factory in the U.S., announced the achievement of important milestones in a year of rapid global expansion of its business. The company stated its total worldwide employment recently topped 10,000 people, hiring approximately 3,500 employees since the beginning of the year. This number includes more than 2,500 manufacturing employees at its production facilities in Southern California. American Apparel now manufactures approximately 275,000 garments per day.
The company also expanded its operations through the acquisition of a garment dye facility in December 2007 and a new fabric dye facility in May 2008. In July, American Apparel entered into a 10-year lease on a 300,000 square foot warehouse in downtown Los Angeles to accommodate increases in production capacity. The company expects to invest approximately $10 million this year in expanding its production operations.
American Apparel also announced in August it completed the grant of approximately 1.9 million shares of the company’s common stock to its factory employees, pursuant to the company’s 2007 Performance Equity Plan. Based on the closing stock price of American Apparel on September 8, 2008, this grant has a value of approximately $18 million. The shares were fully vested upon grant, and were registered through a form S-8 filed with the SEC on April 17, 2008. The company expects to distribute an additional 800,000 shares to its retail and administrative employees in the coming weeks.
Dov Charney, president and CEO of American Apparel, stated: “I am very pleased by the rapid expansion of American Apparel this year, the continued momentum our business is enjoying worldwide, and the important investments we have made this year to position the company for future growth and profitability.” Charney continued, “We have welcomed a large number of new employees into the American Apparel family this year, and by so doing have made it possible for them to earn a decent livelihood for themselves and their families. I am particularly proud that so many of our long-standing manufacturing employees have become shareholders in American Apparel, which serves as recognition of their contributions to the company’s success. Going forward they will now have a direct stake in American Apparel’s financial success.”