Just realized that it has been a while since these reports were updated… So here you go.
As JRB enters into its eighth year, the upward trend lines in all areas continue.
We estimated that well over 98 percent of all orders received during this period were shipped the same or next day. Thus our primary customer service goal was achieved. The Trail Days period in May experienced slightly higher delay, but no order exceeded two weeks to ship.
This spring the Sierra Series of quilts was completed with the addition of the Sierra Stealth in both regular and long models.
An option for customers to order either 800 fill power down or upgrade to 900 fill power down for all JRB quilts was added beginning in January 2011.
The new JRB Hex Tarps were added in three materials; spinnaker (a company first for this lighter tarp material), 1.3 oz. silicon impregnated nylon (silnyl), and woodland camouflage patterned, urethane coated, 1.9 oz. ripstop nylon.
The Bear Mountain Bridge Hammock received another product upgrade to soften the front bug net zipper corners for increased ease of zipper function.
We added a mid size set of the Self Tensioning Line specifically for hex tarps. Self Tensioning Line sets are now available in pairs or sets with two ridge line cords and one, two or three pairs of STLs for corresponding diamond, hex or large rectangle based tarps.
To reduce production and warehousing and increase capacity issues, the Sniveller line of JRB quilts was reduce from six models to three, with the retirement of the original Stealth, No Sniveller and Rocky Mountain Sniveller quilts. These models are effectively replaced by the Sierra Stealth, Sierra Sniveller, and High Sierra Sniveller quilts.
New products also saw the successful prototype of the Mt Washington 4 Short on 1 May. A trial production run is scheduled for later this year. Introduction of the MW4S is planned for early this winter.
Other new product development saw prototypes, trial run and initial production of the small and medium JRB Speed Sacks. Now available, these double ended sacks provide simple, fast and effective field set up and subsequent stowage of tarps and hammocks.
The prototype of an accessory pole bag for spreader bars is underway and the trial run should be completed in the third quarter, with production hopefully in time for the winter holiday sale period. Field testing for the last two years has proven the worth of this accessory bag to security and protection of bridge hammock spreader bars, as well as convenient, safe storage for other hard to pack metal items such as tent pegs and long handled spoons.
In advertising, the art upgrade for Backpacker magazine was completed.
During this period total inventory grew to achieve a company goal of three to six months of supply for all items.
In Late march our physical location changed for the third time. Our larger and more efficient space has significantly improved organization and operations for production, storage of raw material and finished inventory goods, as well as shipping and administrative functions.
First, the company posture in inventory and ongoing production, as well as shipping growth, is in place to assure customers that “same or next day shipping” goals for the busy and growing fall and holiday seasons will continue to be met.
As noted above, new products such as the Mt Washington 4 Short under quilt and the spreader pole accessory bags will soon be available.
Web site improvements are planned in the coming year, as well as another exciting product or two for introduction by the Spring of 2012. No details for now.
Jack and Jack
Jacks ‘R’ Better, LLC