And Leather Usually called elastic tubular panties for the neck in Catalonia. This is one of the biggest achievements of the Catalan company, the silent effect: becoming synonymous with its star product. But this event opens the door to the challenge of moving forward, to see the brand something else as a manufacturer of tech accessories to protect the customer from the cold. Buff, which has had its headquarters and main factory in Igualada for over thirty years, is pursuing a new horizon: to be a brand while still being a manufacturer.
Buff was born in 1992 by Joan Rojas, the son of a producer from Igualada who owns a small factory in the Catalan city, one of the textile poles in the city. The company was born with Rojas a lightweight, comfortable and multifunctional accessory to protect himself from the cold and wind when he went touring or out on his motorcycle.
Three decades later, the company operates a 1,500 square meter factory and three warehouses in Igualada, the United States and Canada, and produces more than seven million units annually. At its core, technical capabilities continue to be elastic, or tubular, pantyhose, originally aimed at high-level or extreme sports athletes.
In 2020, the company began the digitization and modernization of its warehouse in Igualada with an area of 3,000 square meters and in which it simultaneously manages four seasons, a total of 6,000 contexts. There are an average of 25 people working there, a figure that can be multiplied by three in high season. This year, the company has increased its productivity by 30% as compared to the year before its implementation.
From the warehouse, Buff supplies products indirectly (to external distributors and its warehouses in the United States and Canada) and directly (to individual customers) in over sixty countries, in addition to its online store and product supply. markets where it is available.
The company has added 1,500 square meters of surface area to its production capacity, which is spread over three floors.
In addition to increasing productivity, one of the improvements that warehouse digitization has allowed is to improve product traceability. “Our system is integrated with carriers and they receive information about who they should deliver the package to and what it includes in real time,” explains Sol Espiner, director of logistics at Buff.
The Catalan company also expanded its factory last year, a process in which it invested 1.4 million euros in new machinery in addition to 200,000 euros. Thus, the company has added 1,500 square meters of surface to its production capacity, a space spread over three floors, with the upper floor still unused. “The topmost floor is a plus about potential developments for the future”, explains Guillermo Oliva, Head of Transformation and Supervisor of Supply Chain and Operations at Buff.
The Catalan company’s new brand strategy is to promote its brand to reach a less athletic customer without leaving behind the high quality technical aspect of its product. The company tried to reach fashion through less sporty-looking collections of neckwear over the past decade, but the project took off.
Buff supplies the product indirectly to sixty countries
Now, the buff’s challenge is to “win a client who isn’t necessarily an athlete, but who is skate to work”, in the words of the company’s CEO, David Camps. Although Outside the house The key to the company’s success over the past thirty years, especially the pandemic, when its sales increased by more than 50%, sports This will be your next move, approaching sports like yoga or home training.
The company is also moving forward in its sustainability objectives built into the strategy do more now, Looking to this year, the Catalan company will begin to move the production of its knitted products line to its factory in Igualada, which aims to grow 100% in-house in 2025.
The company began the process of integrating production of its Cap line last year, which it launched in 2017 and is partly produced in Asia. By 2023, Buff expects 100% of these products to be made in its factory, greatly reducing production.
In addition, formulated in its sustainability objectives, the Catalan company plans to change the design of its iconic tubular so that it is made of one fiber, polyester, “but while maintaining its current elasticity,” the Buff team says. Currently, the product is made of polyester with elastane, which makes it difficult to recycle.