Quartz Co. receives $1.25 million in support from BDC Capital to restart production during the COVID-19 crisis
MONTREAL, June 9, 2020—High-end winter coat manufacturer Quartz Co. has obtained $1.25 million in financing from BDC Capital’s Growth & Transition Capital division, enabling it to reopen its factories and recall more than 80 employees. The Quartz Co. facilities in Montreal and Victoriaville, which had been closed since March 13 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, were able to restart production in late April.
At the onset of the crisis, Quartz Co. management quickly realized the negative impact that the pandemic would have on the retail industry. Quartz Co. therefore hurried to find solutions while furthering its desire to do its part to decrease the effects of the crisis. That is how the company developed a new niche, that of hospital masks, hoods and gowns, which it now manufactures in addition to its outerwear. It is thus helping to supply Canada’s hospitals with personal protective equipment, including the Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec, which was one of its first customers. This production of medical equipment “made in Canada” will continue in the coming months, as long as there is a need.
The funds provided by BDC Capital are being used to restart production, support fixed costs and replenish Quartz Co.’s cash assets. This financing comes from the working capital loan program set up by BDC for Canadian companies affected by COVID-19. It features a lower-than-normal interest rate and a principal holiday to give the company a chance to get back on its feet before having to make repayments. Because it is a standardized product specifically designed for the circumstances, BDC Capital was able to respond quickly to Quartz Co.’s needs. Quartz Co. was also able to benefit from principal and interest repayment relief on a mezzanine loan that BDC Capital granted in 2015 to finance its acquisition by its current owners.
“BDC Capital is a long-standing partner with whom we have been working since the company’s acquisition in 2015,” says Jean Philippe Robert, President of Quartz Co. We are very pleased to be working with BDC Capital, which will once again enable us to reach new heights. In recent weeks, their team has been very supportive, proving once again that BDC Capital is an outstanding ally.”
“The assistance obtained from BDC Capital will allow us not only to get through the current crisis, but also to emerge from it in good financial health,” adds François Xavier Robert, Chief Operating Officer of Quartz Co. We can now focus on evolving Quartz Co.’s product offering and brand, reopening our production facilities, and fulfilling customer orders scheduled for the fall of 2020.”
This financing was set up by Catherine Lalonde, Director, Growth & Transition Capital at BDC Capital. “Quartz Co.’s shareholders have always been driven by a deep desire to take their company to another level and have consistently exceeded our expectations since we have been supporting them,” explains Ms. Lalonde. “They have invariably found solutions to their challenges in the past, and they are demonstrating that same agility today. We are confident that Quartz Co. will find its way back to growth under their leadership.”
About Quartz Co.
Founded in Quebec in 1997, Quartz Co. has carved out a place of choice, in Canada and internationally, in the high-end winter coat manufacturing industry. Its products are known for their high quality and reliability, their resistance to the northern climate and their lightness. Acquired in 2015 by three brothers, Jean Philippe, François Xavier and Guillaume Robert, Quartz Co. has experienced remarkable growth as its coats are now sold in more than 20 countries, mainly in Canada, the United States, Germany, France, Japan, Norway and Greenland, to major fashion banners and stores that sell outdoor clothing.
Solidly established in Quebec with two factories in Victoriaville and Montreal—more specifically, in the borough of St Michel, and a head office in Montreal’s Mile End—Quartz Co. is part of the new generation of Canadian winter coat manufacturers.
About BDC Capital
BDC Capital is the investment arm of BDC, the bank for Canadian entrepreneurs. With over $3 billion under management, BDC Capital serves as a strategic partner to the country’s most innovative firms. It offers businesses a full spectrum of capital, from seed investments to growth equity, supporting Canadian entrepreneurs who have the ambition to stand out on the world stage. Visit bdc.ca/capital.