Vancouver enterprise reinvents itself, offers protecting gear

A small business switched gears to help survive the pandemic while meeting a need

by: Kohr Harlan

Posted: Feb 19, 2021 / 7:33 AM PST
Updated: Feb. 19, 2021 / 7:33 AM PST

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – It’s been an uncertain year for small businesses – yet some are reinventing themselves to meet new needs and respond to new demands created by the pandemic.

No company is more characteristic of this than that of Vancouver Ace lineup athletics. They have mastered the pandemic while providing much-needed personal protective equipment for SW Washington and beyond.

For more than 10 years, The Bread and Butter from Ace Lineup Athletics has been putting designs and logos on t-shirts, baseball caps and other items suitable as a logo. But when the pandemic hit America a year ago, the promotional products business dried up – and owners Chad and Alisa Williams knew their old business probably wouldn’t be enough to get them through.

“But what made us move was an article in Colombia that said eight mayors in our county couldn’t get the PPE they needed because everything was stored in Seattle,” Alisa said.

Alisa and Chad looked at each other – they already had good relationships with Chinese suppliers of masks, shields, and other personal protective equipment that many here in America needed but couldn’t get their hands on. So suddenly they jumped from logos and embroidered baseball caps to the procurement of personal protective equipment.

First of all, it was primarily intended to help serve hospitals, medical facilities, and other locations in the Portland Vancouver community that needed it.

“We were mainly trying to fill the void for our community,” said Chad. “We had a number of mayors trying to get PSA from our governor and we said ‘we can get it’ so we started reaching them.”

Since this quick business decision a year ago, medical protective equipment has become established your website. It didn’t replace the company’s promotional products sector – but it did help meet a huge need for PPE in the community while keeping another small business alive to fight another day.

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