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Clinton factory to close as Iowa company folds

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An Iowa company that makes athletic clothing is going out of business and will shut a factory in Clinton, N.C., with more than 80 workers.

Dodger Industries will take another six weeks to fill its last orders and sell its assets to repay suppliers and creditors, CEO Stephen Throssel told the Des Moines Register.

He blamed the demise of the company, founded in 1940 as Dodger Gym Co., on foreign competition, shrinking market share and declining clothing prices.

"It's a sad time. We're a family. There's been a lot of crying, a lot of anger, a lot of resentment," he said. "We're grieving."

The company employs 10 people in Iowa, so the bulk of the layoffs will hit the Clinton facility, which Dodger bought in 1994. The factory is located about 65 miles southeast of Raleigh.

In a letter notifying N.C. regulators of pending layoffs, Dodger officials wrote that they had tried to find a buyer that would continue to employ its workers. But "operating losses and the resulting drain in cash was too great to overcome," the company wrote.

The Clinton facility will close on March 28, and all sewers, cutters and other workers will be let go, the company wrote. The company sells athletic shirts, pants, hats and other products to schools, little leagues and other customers.

Throssel told the Des Moines newspaper that Dodger tried to downsize and restructure, but “the recession just knocked us off our pins.”

The company, which employed 400 at its peak, was profitable until about five years ago, Throssel said.

"A couple years ago, the owners decided to take the last couple million in equity and see if we could turn the company around," said Throssel, whose father was one of Dodger's original investors.

Throssel said he hopes the Iowa and North Carolina workers quickly find new employment.

"It's been a long, fun ride with a difficult ending," he said.

Read the Des Moines Register report here.


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The Hope and Change Express

The Hope and Change Express rolls on.

Let me guess...

I guess Purdue wasn't funneling enough corporate welfare their way.

That's an asinine comment. 

That's an asinine comment.  The problem is all the corporate fatcats in the textile industry who funnel their jobs overseas.  And this company's in Iowa anyway which has a Repugnican governor, so shouldn't you be blaming your own party for this loss?

oldwizer, Yes, Iowa has a


Yes, Iowa has a republican governor.  He has been governor for all of 22 days, including today.

The preceding 12 years, they had a democrat governor. 

So yes, shouldn't we blame them!?!?!?

Get off your high horse. 

Get off your high horse.  The point is, it's not any governor's fault -- I was responding to asinine finger-pointing, not starting it, as my orginal post clearly indicates.

oldwizer, Nice try.  But


Nice try.  But you constantly blame republicans for anything and evertyhing.  If you could blame them for male pattern baldness you would.  Who knows, you probably have!


And you know it stung when you got nailed on your republican governor nonsense.


Nope, just looks like you weren't buying enough clothing from the Dodger company. Thanks for buying American, Libertine

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About the blogger

Assistant Business Editor Alan M. Wolf joined the N&O in 1999 covering the business of health care. He became an editor in 2001, and helps oversee the paper's daily business coverage and Sunday Work&Money section. He lives in Clayton with his wife and two children. Reach him at 919-829-4572 or e-mail him.