Although Mount Olympus Awards letterman jackets and varsity jacket awards are now seen in countless movies, on television, in Broadway plays and musicals, on the pages of major magazines, and even local communities near you thanks to hundreds of thousands of satisfied customers walking around wearing one of our products, we began as nothing more than an idea in a college dorm room more than a decade ago.
Our founders wanted to create a first class varsity letter business that served the needs of customers and could operate from virtually anywhere thanks to an integrated, low-cost business model that efficiently linked suppliers and end retail customers. Over a period of ten months stretching from January through October of 2005, they coded the first product pages by hand, cataloged graphics, lined up vendors, secured business licenses, and negotiated pricing terms, cutting out the middleman entirely when necessary. By combining bulk purchasing and automation, the efficiency gains were so great that by the end of the first full year of operation, a single person at Mount Olympus Awards was able to match the output of thirty-five employees at one of our biggest competitors.
In 2007, the business was reorganized as a Missouri limited liability company with all membership units held by four equity partners; the two original co-founders and two related parties. It established an office in a city near Kansas City, Missouri and expanded into additional e-commerce activities, providing customers with everything from fountain pens to baby products across a portfolio of sites. During this time, it also served as an investing vehicle for the owners, funding the acquisition of blue chip stocks and real estate from retained earnings.
In 2012, the business was restructured as part of a reorganization of the co-founders' portfolio and estate plans. Non-sporting goods operations were divested from the parent Mount Olympus Awards umbrella and/or exchanged in asset swaps. The investment portfolio was distributed and changes made to the operating agreement so that the enterprise would become a pure play operating entity. Concurrently, the two co-founders arranged for the company to repurchase 57% of its own outstanding membership units, providing a cash windfall for members, while ultimately having the effect of leaving them as the only remaining equity holders once the dust had settled. Since that time, they have retained 100% ownership of the firm they started during their undergraduate years.
Today, Mount Olympus Awards remains one of the largest, best known, and most successful letterman jacket affinity companies in the United States. Whether it's an emergency rush order of 300 finished jackets that need to be ready-to-wear-out-of-the-box for a production company facing a broadcast deadline on network television or a single school mascot ordered by a parent to surprise her child, we treat every single order as if it were the most important order in the world because, to us, it is. We value your business and thank you for being part of this incredible journey.