Red Deer’s IFR Workwear acquired by global industry leader

A local workwear company has been acquired by a global industry leader. (Contributed photo)

A leading Canadian workwear brand based in Red Deer has been acquired by a global leader in protective workwear.

In a June 9th release, IFR Workwear, established by locals Reg Radford and Erin Buckland in 2005, said they have been acquired by Portwest.

According to the release, Portwest “is one of the fastest growing protective wear companies in the world, specializing in flame resistant, high visibility, workwear, hand and foot protection products in addition to a full range of personal protective equipment.”

Portwest employs over 5,300 people worldwide and has sales in 130 different countries.

IFR currently operates a fully-owned factory in Mexico, two warehouses in USA and Canada, and employs over 250 people across all sites.

“IFR Workwear will continue to provide fantastic quality and service to our customers,” said Erin Buckland, President of IFR Workwear.

“Portwest and IFR Workwear are very compatible organizations, and we share the same route to market by selling only to distributors and resellers. We are experts in FR garments and this move will open many opportunities for our customers as well as expanding our fantastic product offering.”

Buckland said the strategic acquisition will allow for IFR to develop faster in North America.

“I am delighted to remain on the management team at IFR Workwear and our core commitment of developing pioneering products, investment in stock and rapid customer service remains unchanged,” Buckland said.

According to the release, IFR is the first entry into the Canadian market for Portwest.

“IFR Workwear will benefit from the global presence of Portwest and Portwest will benefit from the relevant presence in Canada and the production facility in Mexico,” said Portwest Managing Director, Iñigo Perez Corella.

“Together we will bring a new reinforced value proposition to customers in Canada with a mix of value for money, excellent service, and innovation.”

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