With over 100 years of experience in the promotional products writing instrument game, it’s safe to say we know the business. Our roots span back to 1908 when A.C. Stewart founded the Souvenir Lead Pencil Company in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. By the 1940s, it would grow into a multimillion-dollar international business specializing in promotional imprinting on writing instruments.
As sales in Iowa skyrocketed, a little company across the Atlantic called BIC was getting off the ground. In 1950, Marcel Bich improved on the original ballpoint pen design, and his company launched the first of its soon-to-be iconic pens. By 1969, they had created a promotional products offshoot, BIC Graphic, that flourished at its US headquarters in Clearwater, Florida.
Through a series of mergers and acquisitions, which are not new to the promo industry, these two heavy hitters would end up under one roof and are known today as Koozie Group. And even though we no longer use the BIC® name, we remain the exclusive promotional products supplier of BIC®-branded writing instruments in the US and Canada. Our long history of bringing standout writing instruments to the promo space is just one of the many reasons to Write On! with Koozie Group. Click on over to our website to learn more!
Gimbels department store sold the first ballpoint pens in the United States on October 29, 1945. The now commonplace writing instrument retailed for $12.50—the equivalent of over $180 today. (1)