Uniform Industry Has Public Sector Dressed for Success

How has the public sector continued to influence the shift and growth in the uniform industry? One example. Recently, we published a report, which included information on uniform requirements for marching bands. Rest assured, procurement activity by government agency types goes way beyond putting flutists, drummers, and the flag corps in uniforms!

Changes occurring in the industry are not isolated to either the private or public sectors.

From their story back in Mar ‘18, Apparelinterviewed Richard J. Lerman, the former president of the North American Association of Uniform Manufacturers & Distributors (NAUMD), and he pointed out, “…changes in style and formality in hospital, school, hotel and other private sector apparel will continue to keep the industry on its toes.” Full report.

He continued, “In the public sector business segment (police, fire, postal, military, etc.), for example, fewer independent distributors are in the business than when I left, which is likely changing the shape of the industry, and even the Association.”

Where are uniforms being manufactured? In global markets, back in Jun ‘18, MarketWatch had this to say, “The Asia-Pacific will occupy for more market share in following years, especially in China, also fast growing India and Southeast Asia regions. North America, especially the United States, will still play an important role which cannot be ignored. Any changes from United States might affect the development trend of Workwear/Uniforms.” Full report.

Some of the major players in uniform manufacturing in the U.S. are Aramark, Cintas, and UniFirst. However, there are numerous other excellent and qualified manufacturers in the United States. Manta lists 257 U.S. businesses specializing as ‘Uniforms Manufacturers’. A number of these companies specialize in specific types of uniforms: firefighter, police, corrections, etc… We have a number of clients doing very well fulfilling various uniform requirements from the public sector.

The latest. So far in 2018, we have noted a significant spike in government solicitation and purchasing activity. This includes uniforms for military, firefighters, law enforcement, education, athletics, corrections and a number of other job-specific uniforms. Not to be lost in the discussion, along with bids / RFPs for new uniforms, we have also identified a number of requests for uniform rental services, cleaning, and other extraneous items/solutions/services.

Uniform-related bids / RFPs by year:

‘16: 229

‘17: 191

‘18: 352 to date.

“Uniform”-related bids / RFPs. Past 12 months.

Leading U.S. Regions


Officer Candidate School Graduation, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Alabama, October, 2012

Business is very good. The manufacturers producing team uniforms pocketed approximately $900 million in 2017. Also last year, tactical and service clothing revenues were in the same neighborhood. Look at it this way. Is it realistic to believe that those public sector entities, mentioned herein, with uniform-related needs today, will have a decreased demand in the future?

Yes, it is highly unlikely. In summary, if your business provides uniforms or related, regardless of the job or function you are helping to outfit, there are numerous opportunitites in the public sector. For certain, the uniform industry is keeping the public sector looking sharp!

To see more information on the bids / RFPs, and to check out the related solicitation docs, call us at 888.808.5356 or visit BidPrime.

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