I spoke with Donn Tice, the CEO of Nano-Tex today. His private company provides spill-, stain-. and static-resistant technology to 90 clothing brands including the Gap, Eddie Bauer, Brooks Brothers, and Hugo Boss. He says that clothing manufacturers can get a $3 to $5 price premium for nano-protected garments, and that retailers are able to sell the enhanced clothing 15% to 80% faster than regular clothes.
"Menswear is growing faster than womenswear," he notes, "which is not what you’d expect coming out of a recovery." Tice thinks the fact that nano-enhanced clothing is more a menswear phenomenon has something to do with that disparity. So what's the financial impact of nanopants, shirts, and ties? "We definitely know that it is material to the Gap and Old Navy," says Tice, "to Nordtsrom in shirting, and Edidie Bauer has done a huge business." The next market Tice is going after is homegoods (think spill-resistant upholstery, sheets, and tablecloths).