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The 2006 Inc. 500 List
Inc. Magazine
September 2006

No. 308: American Apparel
Los Angeles, CA

Ranking: 308
Industry: Retail
Founded: 1998
3 Year Growth: 439.9%
Revenue: $211 million
Employees: 4,000
Past Honoree: 2005

What it does: Manufactures cotton clothing in its Los Angeles factory, selling it wholesale and through a network of 140 stores. Why it's growing: Thanks to a rash of publicity—most of it related to the company's "sweatshop free" ethos—American Apparel is a hot brand. Founder Dov Charney misses no opportunity to remind people of his commitment to ethical manufacturing, a message that resonates with young people in urban areas. What's next: Having established a presence in most large U.S. cities, Charney says American Apparel must now look beyond U.S. markets. He expects to open 100 new stores in Europe over the next few years.
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