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The football pub glass—one of AGD’s best sellers.
A Touch of Glass
Deep Etching and High Class from Artistic Glass Design
March 10, 2009

It’s the day of the big game. You’ve been planning all week for your tailgate party. Your spread is sumptuous, and you’re decked out in your team’s colors from head to toe. Then you pull out a sleeve of generic plastic cups. The scene is suddenly compromised.

“That’s our target audience,” says Trish Wampler, VP of Sales & Marketing for Artistic Glass Design. “Successful alumni and fans who are ready to step up to high-end licensed glassware.”

AGD is one of the licensed industry’s most heart-warming stories. Anne and Charles Thrash founded the company as a hobby nine years ago in Chattahoochee, Florida. Business quickly grew, especially after the couple obtained Florida and FSU licenses. Eventually, the Thrashes decided to sell. They found a willing buyer in Wampler and her family in January of 2006.

A set of square beverage glassware, including decanter, ice bucket and shot glass, which retails for $180 to $200.

AGD was in part the dream of her brother, Bob Boyle, who is legally blind. “My brother is good with his hands,” says Wampler. “The company gave him a chance to do what he does best. Bob handles production, and I oversee sales and marketing. His goal is to expand and hire others who have handicaps.”

Expansion has not been a problem for AGD so far. The company has made great inroads in the collegiate marketplace with its unique logo glassware. Currently, AGD holds more than 35 licenses. It plans to add 30 more by the end of 2009. AGD has also tapped the bridal and monogram markets, plus corporate and custom design.

One of AGD’s new 16-ounce wine glasses.

“Quality sets up apart,” says Wampler. “We start with glass that is just a step below crystal. Then we use a deep-etch process that wears and washes incredibly well. You can feel our etchings when you run your fingers across them.”

AGD’s top three sellers are its football pub glass, 10-ounce wine glass and 10-ounce square double old-fashioned. The company recently introduced a pilsner glass and 16-ounce wine glass that are proving popular. Eager to work with retailers of all sizes, AGD offers programs with no minimums and its products are made in the U.S.

“Even in today’s economy, consumers are looking for high-end items with real value,” says Wampler. “All you need are a few pieces for display. Our margins are great, and our products are a way to set your store apart.”

 

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