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Article

Leading Kayak Manufacturing Factory Located in Utah Near Outdoor Retailer Show Location Started in Owners Garage

August 1, 2012

CLEARFIELD, UTAH — While hundreds of manufacturers and vendors flock to Utah for the widely-popular annual Outdoor Retailer Show, show exhibitor and local manufacturer Lifetime Products, Inc. is proud and fortunate to be headquartered just a few miles from the show location.

Lifetime Products, Inc. is one of the largest kayak manufacturers in the U.S., manufacturing kayaks and paddleboards under both the Lifetime and Emotion Kayaks brands. The company's headquarters and expansive manufacturing facilities are located just north of Salt Lake City in Clearfield, Utah.

Despite today being a global manufacturer with products sold in more than 70 countries, Lifetime's story is the true American dream with humble beginnings in the owner's Utah garage. In 1986, the owner set out with a simple goal to build a better basketball hoop for his family and, consequently, invented the first adjustable height basketball hoop that could be raised or lowered in just seconds. This invention transformed the basketball industry by allowing players of all ages and skill levels to play on the same system.

This same passion for continuous improvement and challenging conventional manufacturing techniques fueled Lifetime to later invent the first blow-molded, polyethylene folding table which made heavy wooden banquet tables practically obsolete. From there, Lifetime utilized its plastics and metals manufacturing expertise to further expand its product offerings to include storage sheds, lawn and garden products and, most recently, water sports products.

Already a leader in the sporting goods industry as the world's largest manufacturer of residential basketball hoops, in 2010, Lifetime acquired the assets of Dragonfly Innovation, Corp. The decision allowed Lifetime to add kayaks to its lineup of blow-molded high-density polyethylene (HDPE) products that were made in the USA, and to enter the water sports arena through an entirely new, yet complementary, sporting goods industry. Building upon the strong Lifetime brand of quality products at mass retailers, Lifetime kayaks have quickly become known for their stable designs targeted for beginner to intermediate paddlers with matching entry-level price points.

In 2011, Lifetime acquired Emotion Kayaks and thus became one of the largest kayak manufacturers in the U.S. Lifetime and Emotion Kayaks both are manufactured in Lifetime's plastics facility in Clearfield, Utah which is the largest blow-molded facility in North America. In addition, renowned kayak designers Tim Niemier (Dragonfly Innovations & Ocean Kayaks) and Tom Eckert (Dragonfly Innovations), and Tom Strauss (Emotion Kayaks) are now part of the Lifetime water sports research and design team.

"We love seeing all of the outdoor companies pour into our backyard every year for the OR Show," said Lifetime President Richard Hendrickson. "We are proud to be one of the manufacturers that makes products for outdoor enthusiasts - and we are even prouder to be making them right here in the outdoor adventure haven of Utah."