Chuck Mooty and his cousin, Paul Mooty, that’s who.
The cousins, both 51, began producing blankets in September at Minnesota’s Faribault Woolen Mill, which had been closed for two years. They now have about 35 employees and hope to have 100 next year, reports a USA Today article posted November 30th on azcentral.com.
In the article, Chuck Mooty, a former International Dairy Queen CEO who is Faribault Woolen Mill’s president and CEO, talks about some of the hurdles faced by the mill’s new owners. “You’re looking at a business you don’t know anything about. It needs significant capital to refresh it. There were no customers. We didn’t know what cost and revenue structures would make sense.” Still, he says, “we were stupid enough to think we could do it.”
Like their fathers before them, the two cousins wanted to create and run a business together, says Paul Mooty, a lawyer and the mill’s chief financial officer. They were intrigued by the prospect of resuscitating an iconic American brand, he says, and agreed that “the time is right for a return to American manufacturing.”
To increase their odds for success, Chuck and Paul Mooty rehired a few people who had been working at the mill when it closed. But they’re adding employees gradually “because we don’t want to overextend ourselves too early,” says Chuck Mooty.
Read USA Today’s article about the Mootys and other entrepreneurs pursuing startups in a down economy here.