|By Marketwired .||
|September 3, 2013 05:26 PM EDT||
BOCA RATON, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 09/03/13 -- Gary R. Lewis knows a good idea when he sees one. He cut his teeth in marketing with the National Football League and helped unite hip hop and corporate cultures as chief marketing executive for Vibe magazine in the 1990s.
Lewis has comfortably kept a foot in each of those worlds, and he's always on the lookout for the next big thing. So when a high school football star from his New Jersey hometown Earl Vaughn floated the idea of combining hooded sweatshirts with team sports jerseys in one garment, Lewis took note. A couple weeks later, during a New York Giants game, he looked around and realized that more than half the fans in the chilly stadium were wearing jerseys over hoodies.
"They didn't look comfortable and they didn't look sexy," he said.
Lewis developed the ALL-IN-ONE, a hybrid garment that keeps fans warm and lets them represent their teams at the same time. Lewis market tested the design last fall at local High Schools in Essex County, New Jersey. It was an immediate hit. HybrID sold nearly 75 ALL-IN-ONEs through the school's booster clubs to help raise money for the schools. Lewis's hometown Montclair Mounties went on to become state champions with a 12-0 record (See Inspirations @ www.facebook.com/HybrIDSportsAmerica/Inspirations).
Based on that success, he has partnered with Samuel Foster and Bernard Felder to launch HybrID Sports America, a brand of quality, multi-functional, reasonably priced athletic clothing that seeks to revolutionize the sportswear business.
With more than 250 collegiate licenses -- and just in time for football season -- HybrID Sports America will bring ALL-IN-ONEs to players and fans everywhere.
In addition to ALL-IN-ONEs, HybrID Sports America will sell quality off-the-field sportswear including hoodies, t-shirts and workout gear through its website and exclusive retail partners. Designs on all the company's clothing can be fully customized with different colors, logos and other artwork and embroidery.
"We want to outfit the innovators, tastemakers, & players, families and fans," Lewis said. "We're providing high quality training gear for people who want something fresh, simple and priced right.
Eliminating the overhead expenses of bricks-and-mortar storefronts will enable the company, headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., to keep prices low. Catering to both individuals and groups, the company is able to turn even custom orders around quickly because the garments are finished in the United States. "This is a low overhead, high profit-margin endeavor that just makes sense," Felder said.
Lewis calls himself a "retail baby" because he grew up surrounded by savvy retailers and marketers. His father, Aubrey C. Lewis Sr., the first African American to captain a sport at the University of Notre Dame and an All-American in football and track was also named as The Star-Ledger Offensive Player of the Century while at Montclair High School. He was also an executive with F.W. Woolworth Corporation, Foot Locker's parent company, for 38 years and a board member at the University of Notre Dame before passing away in 2001. As a kid he was part of an informal advisory board when his father's tennis partner developed the concept of Foot Locker as we know it today.
The HybrID Team -- all active athletes -- aim to make stylish, custom training gear that is "genuine, meaningful and different" available to everyone. "Our goal is to empower every athlete, from weekend warriors to kids on the playground, with opportunities, products and inspiration to reach their full potential," Lewis said. "We want to help people live a complete life -- physically, mentally, perhaps even spiritually -- through sport and GET STRONG."
About HybrID Sports America
HybrID Sports America is a leader in off-the-field sportswear, offering high-quality hoodies, t-shirts and workout clothes that can be customized with images, logos and colors that are ideal for sports teams, group events and fundraisers. As an American brand headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, HybrID sells all products through its website and select exclusive retail partners @ www.hybridsportsamerica.com