Alpha Industries

Alpha Industries

Alpha Industries Profile

Alpha Industries History

What is Alpha Industries?

Alpha Industries is an American clothing brand founded in 1959 in Knoxville, Tennessee. With a focus on military-style clothing, the brand is best known for its iconic signature items, such as Alpha Industries bomber jackets and Alpha Industry utility vests.

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Is Alpha Industries a good brand?

Alpha Industries is a heritage brand selling iconic military bomber jackets and vests made of high-quality and durable materials.

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Who founded Alpha Industries?

Alpha Industries was founded by Samuel Gelber in 1959 in Knoxville, Tennessee, US. Alpha Industries would’ve never existed without some bad business ethics performed by Samuel Gelber’s business partner Robert Lane.

Gelber and Lane produced military clothing; however, being accused of bribing a Department of Defense official, his businesses were barred from receiving any more government contracts. After which, Gelber started Alpha Industries in the basement of a factory in Knoxville, Tennessee, using leased sewing machines with a handful of employees.

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Who owns alpha industries?

Alpha Industries has been a private family-owned business since its founding in 1959. It is led by Mike Cirker, the third-generation leader who took over in 2011.

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Do Alpha Industries jackets run big?

Which Alpha Industries bomber jacket size you should get ultimately depends on how you want it to fit. However, Alpha bombers run slightly small, so if you want to wear a more oversized jumper underneath, it’s a good idea to size up.

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Where are alpha industries jackets made?

Alpha Industries jackets are now made primarily in China, but some of their operations are still based in America. The brand still has a small factory in Knoxville, US, where Alpha military jackets were initially produced.

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What is the story behind Alpha Industries MA-1 bomber jacket?

The MA-1 bomber jacket, also known as the MA-1 flight jacket, is the most well-known piece from Alpha Industries’ history. It was developed in 1958 by Alpha Industries’ preceding company, Dobbs Industries, out of necessity during the new Jet Age of military aviation.

Before jet aircraft, pilots wore bulky leather fleece-lined jackets that absorbed water too easily, making them cold and uncomfortable when taken to the new heights these streamlined jets could fly. The MA-1, with its sage nylon exterior and bright orange polyester lining, solved issues of warmth, weight, and mobility for jet pilots.

After the Vietnam War, civilians began picking up the MA-1 in military surplus and thrift stores, propelling its popularity as an everyday jacket for intermediate to cold weather.

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Where to buy Alpha Industries?

You can purchase Alpha Industries directly at the Alpha Industries online store.

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1957

Samuel Gelber and Robert Lane found Dobbs Industries in Knoxville, Tennessee, to make outerwear for the US military.

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1959

Lane gets in trouble with the Department of Defense for bribing officials and is subsequently barred from government contract work. Gelber splits with Lane and Dobbs Industries and forms his own military outerwear company Alpha Industries.

Soon after its founding, Alpha Industries won its first Department of Defense contract to make Air Force parkas and Navy shirts.

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1963

Alpha Industries wins its first contract to manufacture the MA-1 for the US military. Over time, they’d become the dominant manufacturer of the classic MA-1 jacket.

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1965

The company wins its first Department of Defense contract to make the M-65 field coat. Every year for the next 25 years, Alpha Industries receives contracts to make the M-65 for the military.

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1970

Alpha Industries begins making small batches of jackets for the commercial market to keep production lines going in-between orders for military contracts.

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1982

Samuel Gelber passed away, and new leadership took over at Alpha Industries and expanded the commercial side of the business. They began branding the company by trademarking the three horizontal bars on every one of Alpha Industries’ commercial clothing labels.

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1988

After nearly 30 years in business, Alpha Industries developed and debuted its first brand logo for commercial catalog use. An expanded product line appears specifically for the commercial retail market in their wholesale catalog.

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1992

Receiving a branding facelift, the “Flying A” logo was born in response to rapid growth in the commercial market.

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2008

Alpha Industries begins teaming with streetwear clothing brands. Streetwear and skate companies like Stüssy and Hurley are amongst the first to collaborate.

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2011

Michael Cirker became the CEO of Alpha Industries, replacing his father.

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2016

Celebrities like Kanye West, Gigi Hadid, and Kendall Jenner are spotted wearing the MA-1 bomber jacket, leading to a 30 percent increase in revenue and cementing its place as a wardrobe staple in contemporary fashion.

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2017

Vetements x Alpha Industries collaborate on a bomber jacket collection.

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2019

Alpha Industries drops the SS19 collection.

For the FW19 collection, Alpha Industries collaborated with Eastpak on Alpha bomber jacket-inspired bags.

In autumn 2019, Alpha Industries partnered with NIGO’s flagship streetwear brand A Bathing Ape (BAPE). The A Bathing Ape x Alpha Industries AW19 collab features patchwork and logo badges in black, white, and military green color schemes.

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2021

C2H4 X Mastermind X Alpha Industries team up for an FW21 capsule featuring futuristic, technical bomber jackets.

Alpha Industries keeps its relevance in streetwear and collaborates with Patta, reimagining the iconic M-65 field jacket.

Alpha also teams up with New Balance on Alpha Industries x New Balance military-inspired sneakers.

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2022

Yeseyesee X Alpha Industries released its debut collaboration, featuring leather jackets.

Detroit-based musician ZelooperZ is the face of Alpha’s FW22 collection campaign, which features versatile outerwear pieces.

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