HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. — Sportsheets International was profiled in last weekend’s Orange County Register for its positive impact on the local economy.
Founded in 1993, Sportsheets specializes in fetish and bondage novelties.
“Sportsheets has been a fixture in the community since the beginning,” founder Tom Stewart said. “More than two thirds of our 350+ product line is made in the U.S. and we make a point to source and employ contractors and talent from the area. Keeping operations as local as possible is a key part of our business model and we are proud to have that and our company story featured in such a respected publication.”
Sportsheets International currently owns a 17,000-square-foot warehouse and office in the heart of Huntington Beach that employs more than 40 people.
In 2012, the Orange County Business Journal named Sportsheets International number 93 on its list of 100 fastest-growing companies.
Orange County Register reporter Barbara Venezia highlighted Sportsheets as a family enterprise in her article; Tom Stewart now runs the company with his sister Julie Stewart, who now presides as president.
“I’ve interviewed many successful entrepreneurs, but [Tom] Stewart, 57 and Julie Stewart, 42, who received her MBA in business from Pepperdine, are among the most interesting … as is their success story,” Venezia wrote in her profile.
Inspired by a comedy bit on the "Late Show with David Letterman" in which Letterman donned a Velcro suit, jumped onto a Velcro wall and stuck to it, Tom decided to create a product that would make it fun and easy for couples to tie each other up in the bedroom without worrying about knots and rope. Tom Stewart learned to sew and, with the help of his brother Bob, created the first Sportsheets bondage bed sheet.
Later, the Stewart brothers’ sister and father joined the team and helped build the business.
The company now offers more than 350 specialty items, including restraints, sexual positioning products, strap-on harnesses and the award-winning Sex in The Shower collection.