My Name Is Jay Brown.
In 1989, I was working for a wine distributor in Oregon. On Mondays I would pick up wine at the wineries in the Willamette Valley. I loved their t-shirts and asked permission to sell them into stores which were on my delivery route. They all loved the idea for free marketing so I placed displays in Fred Meyer, Albertsons, Safeway, Bi Mart and many other stores around Oregon. I would buy the shirts from the wineries; soon I asked if I could print them myself through a local printer instead of purchasing from them and Promotions West was born.
I was selling so many shirts that I quit my job and bought a manual press to keep up with demand. Other companies saw what I was doing and asked if I could print for them. I’m an entrepreneur so of course I said yes. One of our first jobs was for the Portland based animation company “Will Vinton.” The design was an eight color but I had only a four color press. Not knowing much about printing, but being an entreprenuer of course I took the job.
I worked non-stop to produce the coolest eight color design on a four color press probably to this day. It was really a work of art if I do say so myself. I delivered the order and the following week got new orders for 45 more designs! In a panic I hired help, I bought more equipment and delivered on time. Word spread and we were contacted by many more companies, including the Portland Trailblazers. We soon grew to a small staff of very talented people and began printing for Nike. In 1998 I sold Promotions West to Bob Dykes, a dear friend that had mentored me through my younger life when he hired me at his grocery store as a box boy at age 15. I started Pro West as an embroidery company.
We positioned ourselves as one of the largest embroidery production facilities in Oregon and soon were working as a Nike factory producing NFL, NBA, MLB, Olympics, USA Track and Field and many, many more uniforms and apparel. We had a great day as a contractor but between the pressure and my desire for creativity I wanted to get back to working with my customers in a smaller environment. In 2017 we changed our name from “Prowest” to “Factory40.” We felt the need to re-brand ourselves from a contractor to a marketing company. The name was a natural fit as for years we were factory #40 for Nike.
It’s been a journey but I want to say thank you to all our customers that have stuck by our side through all the changes. From all of us at Factory40…THANK YOU!