Press Room

Maine Outdoor Brands Awarded Domestic Trade Grant

Maine Outdoor Brands (MOB) is proud to announce it has received a $100,000 Domestic Trade Grant, one of 46 such grants awarded to companies and organizations in Maine to boost sales of Maine-made products nationwide. This grant is provided through the Department of Economic and Community Development’s Domestic Trade Grant Program funded by Governor Mill’s Maine Jobs & Recovery Plan and the American Rescue Plan Act.

Governor Mills introduced the Domestic Trade Program during her visit to Gorham-based outdoor gear manufacturer and MOB member Flowfold last October.

“The Domestic Trade Program is helping folks across America learn what Maine people have known for years: Maine-made products are the best in the world,” said Governor Janet Mills. “These investments will help Maine producers of everything from soap to surfboards effectively market their products, create jobs, and strengthen the Maine economy.”

“The Domestic Trade Program has already generated great results for Maine businesses,” said Heather Johnson, Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development. “These 46 companies are well-positioned to leverage their products to markets across the country, and I look forward to watching their continued success.”

“This grant is a tremendous boost for Maine Outdoor Brands and the over 180 members we represent,” said Jenny Kordick, Executive Director of Maine Outdoor Brands. “With this funding, we can expand our efforts to promote Maine’s outdoor industry, create new sales channels, and provide critical support to emerging outdoor businesses in our state.”

The Domestic Trade Grant will enable MOB to:

  • Expand its in-store presence to additional retail locations, building on the success of our partnership with REI in Westbrook.
  • Pilot collaborative booths at emerging trade shows, including the Snowbound Expo in Boston.
  • Provide technical assistance to small and emerging outdoor product companies, helping them navigate and succeed in the wholesale market.
  • Launch an online storefront on our website, showcasing local outdoor brands.

Since its founding in 2017, MOB has provided collaborative marketing opportunities for outdoor product manufacturers, utilizing the Maine outdoor brand to enhance sales and visibility locally and nationally. For example, through a partnership with the Maine Office of Outdoor Recreation, MOB hosted a collaborative booth at the Outdoor Retailer trade show ten times in the last five years, resulting in dozens of new wholesale accounts, product collaborations, and media for more than thirty individual brands. In 2022 MOB also worked with REI to set up a “buy local” table and signage around the store to highlight Maine brands like Hyperlite Mountain Gear, Good To-Go, Flowfold, Opolis, FLYN, and more. The program was a huge success at REI and is now a model for REI locations around the country. 

Several Maine Outdoor Brands members were also awarded grants, including Grain Surfboards ($45,000 for a B2B Activation Program), Guided Makers LLC ($25,000 for Driving sales and growth), Maine Fly Company ($50,000 for Maine Fly Company Growth), and Marin Skincare ($49,800 for Marin DTC & Retail Marketing Growth).

About Maine Outdoor Brands:

Maine Outdoor Brands (MOB) is an alliance of over 180 outdoor product makers, experience providers, retailers, and organizations dedicated to strengthening Maine’s outdoor recreation economy. MOB empowers outdoor businesses through collaborative marketing, networking, resource sharing, and education.