American Made, American Giant: An Interview With The CEO
The other day we had the esteemed pleasure of sitting down with American Giant CEO, Bayard Winthrop. Usually these interviews are quite boring and have us running for the door after we’ve finished our coffees. This one was quite the opposite, it was actually my favorite interview to conduct so far. It was good to interview a CEO that is more down-to-earth and not so much corner office with floor-to-ceiling windows. Let us give you some little info on American Giant before we tell you anything else. The short story being — great quality, amazing price and American made; with a strong sense of basic men’s fashion.
KENTON magazine: Shed some light on your story for us…
Bayard Winthrop: I started my career in finance and worked for that job throughout high school. I learned right away that it just wasn’t for me. After a couple of years I moved to San Francisco and stumbled into a consumer products company that I ended up running a couple of years later. Most recently, a company called Chrome which started as a messenger bag company and then apparel and footwear. During my time there I realized a couple of trends, one being the “American made” thing. Consumers were starting to care where products are coming from and whose making them.
American Giant then launched in February. We launched originally with sweatshirts, which went way better than expected. We then started launching a new silhouette every 5 weeks. We’ll also have 3 new silhouettes in the fall. We fixed the tailored silhouette. We’re also launching women’s in February, on the same track that we launched men’s. We’re all about the core of your closet.
KENTON: Brands have really started collaborating with artists and different people. Any of that coming up?
Bayard: The short is answer is yes. You’ll see things from us coming in the Fall. Collaborations provide a couple interesting opportunities for us. One, is that it connects us with like minded people. Another thing, is that as an online only brand it allows us to bridge the gap with brands that have physical presences. Whenever we can bridge that gap in a way that is consistent for the brand, it is something that we’ll be looking out for.
American Giant has wiggled its way into our hearts and we couldn’t be happier. They’ve got one amazing team and a beyond amazing collection of basics that exceed all expectations. The layering of basics is coming back and really making a name for itself. Not to mention, you can never have too many good quality basics in your closet. Make sure to check them out!