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Chicago Daily Herald
Football helmet manufacturer Riddell said today that it is expanding its headquarters and testing facility and relocating from Rosemont to Des Plaines.
The company signed a lease for a 27,000-square-foot office and lab space at 1700 W. Higgins Road. "The new space is larger to accommodate growth. It also allows us to build-to-suit the office space and testing lab," said Riddell spokeswoman Erin Griffin.
The company will vacate its existing building and move its 58 employees about a half mile down the road to its new six-story office space by July 1.
Part of the move to Des Plaines involves expanding its equipment testing facility, Griffin said. The new space will include a testing lab and connected work space to advance the design and development of football headgear, protective equipment and head impact monitoring technology, the company said.
Riddell - which often takes two to three years to develop, make and test a new helmet - is moving forward with high-tech, more expensive gear.
Riddell considered several areas for its relocation and found the Des Plaines market was best for employees and visitors because of its close access to Chicago and O'Hare International Airport, said Jon Springer, executive vice president of CBRE, who represented Riddell on the deal, along with Paul Diederich and Andrew Kaplan.
Riddell's relationship with football goes back to 1929, when John T. Riddell started the company after he was head football coach at Evanston High School. The company first made cleats and later made the first plastic helmets and shoulder pads.
Dan Arment is now president & CEO of Riddell and its parent company, BRG Sports.
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