Eagle Ottawa Finishes Fiscal ‘14 Continuing its Strong Growth in the Global Automotive Leather Market

  • Achieves record performance as annual sales approach $1 Billion
  • Announces $10M Investment in Rochester Hills, Mich. Innovation Center
  • Launches re-branding campaign to celebrate 150 years and to recognize new strategic positioning
  • Awaits regulatory approvals to finalize transfer of ownership

Auburn Hills, Mich.: Global automotive leather supplier Eagle Ottawa, LLC expects to finish a record fiscal year 2014, growing year-over-year revenue levels by more than 18%. This is the fifth straight year of double-digit growth for the company, including growth from $485 million in 2011 to nearly $1 billion in 2014, representing a 25% compounded annual growth rate.

“The global leather market continues to expand as consumers recognize the value and prestige that leather brings to an automobile,” said Jerry Sumpter, Eagle Ottawa’s chief executive. “We are well positioned globally to respond to that growth and to further enhance leather’s appeal with innovative offerings that make automotive interiors more beautiful, more distinctive and more functional.”

Eagle Ottawa’s dedication to advancing the performance, functionality and design of automotive leather products is proven by its unwavering history of investment in Innovation. Over the last 3 years, the company has invested more than $75 Million in global Innovation initiatives and resources including design, R&D and marketing. In 2014, Eagle Ottawa further expanded Innovation activities in China and Europe, and, in the United States, the Company announced a $10 Million expansion of its Rochester Hills, Mich. Innovation Center, including:

  • 16,500 sq. foot expansion
  • Expanded prototype and validation capabilities
  • New customer co-creation center, aimed at empowering customers to ideate, prototype and validate their inspirations
  • Workspace for more than 50 new associates to support Innovation activities in the years to come

Mr. Sumpter added, “We truly believe that leather is the most luxurious choice a consumer can make when choosing vehicle options. The magic is leather’s flexibility to respond to different covering treatments and design options. We see our job as providing the best leather in the industry while constantly pushing the envelope in innovation and technology. After 150 years in the business we are experts in leather craftsmanship and we are committed to delivering groundbreaking science to accompany it.”

In 2015 Eagle Ottawa celebrates its 150th anniversary by continuing the tradition of producing the world’s finest leathers. In recognition of this milestone and to more properly reflect the company’s strategic direction, including its global and value added mindset, Eagle Ottawa undertook a complete re-branding initiative and has developed a new logo and tagline to help guide the company into the future.

“We felt it fitting to celebrate our past by energizing our future with a redesigned logo and new tagline that reflects our latest strategic direction and sets the tone for our company’s next century and half of success,” said Sumpter. “Our new logo represents key characteristics of the company and our products: Elegance, Simplicity, Inspiration and Beauty. Our new tagline, “Be world-class,” is a constant challenge to our company and everyone we work with to deliver the best effort in everything we do.”

Lear’s has announced plans to acquire Eagle Ottawa and the transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015, subject to customary conditions, including regulatory approvals.

“The Eagle Ottawa team is excited about the opportunities created by Lear’s acquisition. The acquisition will bring our world-class leather craftsmanship face-to-face with the complexities of seat design, sewing and final seat assembly. By expanding our knowledge base and resources in these areas, we will advance our expertise and further perfect our product development, quality and design capabilities”, said Sumpter.

“This combined expertise will ultimately bring better products to address growing market demands, as consumers continue to expect higher quality and styling distinction in premium and luxury interiors.”

Eagle Ottawa is a global leading manufacturer of leather solutions for the automotive industry. Created in 1865, Eagle Ottawa has a longstanding heritage of blending traditional craftsmanship and innovative technology. We design, engineer and manufacture genuine leather solutions for all automotive interior applications and vehicle market segments. Our global capabilities include design, research & development, product validation, manufacturing (tanning and finishing), cutting and sewing. Headquartered in Auburn Hills, we have production facilities in North America, South America, Europe and Asia to better serve our customers. Eagle Ottawa leather solutions are featured in over 100 vehicles globally.