Nokona Athletic Goods Company reports that all is well one year after it burned to the ground, the 70 year old building destroyed by fire. With nothing left standing but the casts to build the baseball gloves and the spirit of its employees, Nokona has rebuilt the factory and is now rebuilding the brand to re-establish the company once again as a major contender in the baseball equipment manufacturing industry.
It did not take long for the company to get back on track – the employees worked hard at putting all the pieces together to continue to manufacture baseball gloves in the U.S. and management did the same by recruiting some of the best players in baseball to rebuild the company. One year later, Nokona has signed David “Big Papi” Ortiz, Vladimir Guerrero and Miguel Cabrera, three of the top hitters in the major leagues today, to endorse the new line of bats, “Nokona Wrecking Crew,” and position the company as a big leaguer. In addition, the Nokona baseball factory is operational 100% and is making more baseball gloves, bats and equipment than it did in previous years.
“Nokona is a big part of the baseball tradition and culture in this country; our employees are ecstatic. We are a small company which has been producing top quality handmade baseball gloves in Nocona, Texas, for over 75 years,” said Buddy Lewis, managing partner. “This year, we introduced a new line of bats which are endorsed by David “Big Papi” Ortiz, Vladimir Guerrero and Miguel Cabrera; and for Vladimir to win the Home Run Derby competition with a Nokona bat is an amazing achievement.”
During a ceremony at the new facilities to commemorate the one year anniversary of the company's re-birth, employees also celebrated Vladimir Guerreros Home Run Derby Crown at the Major League Baseball All Star game events in San Francisco. Vladimir Guerrero, who took the Home Run title this year after been absent from the competition for 7 years, was handed a new Nokona bat by slugger David Ortiz after three turns without hitting one out of the park. This bat, which was delivered inside a beautiful mahogany and ash wooden box, was designed by The Nokona Baseball Factory.
“Being a small company does not mean that Nokona can not compete with the large companies. On the contrary, when the factory is in a small town, and the company represents so much to the local industry, employees take pride in producing the best products. In this case, Nokona manufactures the best baseball and softball gloves in the country and now it has proven that it can produce the best bats as well,” concluded Mr. Lewis.
The fire destroyed the old Nokona building, but this unfortunate event certainly ignited a new life to an industry leader in quality.