Capitalizing on over 75 years of Nordic heritage
Reima’s story begins in 1944 in the small town of Kankaanpää, Finland. We started our business by repurposing old army uniforms to create safe, functional and comfortable clothing for the entire family. Since then, we’ve never stopped researching and developing our ideas.
Today we are creating award-winning kidswear, products and services that will keep our children and our planet safe.
We started by recycling
Reima’s story begins in 1944 in the small town of Kankaanpää, Finland. In the early post-war years, there was shortage of raw materials, so the new company set out to manufacture its first products out of old army snow suits! The first products were women’s workwear, but the manufacturing soon concentrated on outdoor wear for outings, camping and sports, with a special focus on children’s wear.
Durable materials for outdoor
During the 1950s, Reima grew and developed strongly. At the time, there were no sufficiently durable materials for children’s wear, so Reima started to develop one. Reima was also among the first Finnish companies to advertise on TV, and in a memorable ad, the factory manager’s sons spun a grindstone against pant bottoms to prove their durability!
Enstex and exporting
The 1960s were a time of great changes and expansions! The share of Reima products sold outside of Finland increased rapidly, as the eastern export channels were opened. At the end of the decade, the Enstex material was developed. During its time, Enstex was a revolutionary material, with durability and water resistance as the key features. As more women entered working life, Enstex’s durability and ease of care appealed to moms who took their kids to day care.
Focus on product development
Reima’s focus remained on children’s wear, but fashion and sportswear for adults and youth were also manufactured. Reima was acknowledged for several product development projects: for example, developing fireproof multiplayer clothing and workwear for extremely cold conditions. Innovation, safety, and weatherproof clothing is something we’ve always excelled in!
Reima Club: "Something for the boys and girls"
Everything new is often trendy, so Reima marketing in the 1980s featured the brand-new Helsinki metro! Reima also introduced its Reima Club: an entertaining brochure that contained some highlights of the collection was sent to consumers’ homes twice a year. During the decade, Reima needed to clear its stocks and streamline its operations, which succeeded – to a large part thanks to the sales to the Soviet Union.
Innovation brings growth
In the beginning of the decade, Reima joined forces with children’s wear brand Tutta®, and together they also acquired the Lassie® brand. Reima’ product development continued in order to make breathable, wind- and waterproof clothing affordable for families. The resulting Reimatec collection was launched loudly and proudly Finland and soon in all major export countries. Reimatec, a durable and sustainable coating, soon became a synonym for quality outdoor clothing.
Full focus on children
At the turn of the millennium, Reima was a strong cross-industrial pioneer developing also wearable technology. In 2004, Reima’s first shoe collection was launched, with the aim of creating functional, safe shoes that kids are happy to wear in any weather. The same year, Reima stopped producing clothes for adults and turned full focus on the company’s true target group: children of 0 to 12 years of age. The positive effect on profitability was instant, and Reima’s growth has been consistent ever since.
Activating kids globally
Reima led the functional kids’ wear market and strengthened its digital score with a global Reima online store. In 2016, Reima launched a ground-breaking innovation in wearable technology for kids: the ReimaGO concept – consisting of activity sensor, clothing, and app – encouraged kids to be more active. Reima also acquired the start-up company Finnish Baby Box to support its international expansion and offering of digital services.
Sustainability work bears fruit
Reima continues to grow globally with a strong digital presence. Reima’s sustainability work takes huge steps forward: In 2020, Reima launched its first monomaterial products – designed for circularity – and in 2022 Reima made a commitment to the Science Based Targets initiative as the first Finnish apparel company. The durability, safety and high quality of Reima products are now also widely recognized as important sustainability factors.