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Kansas manufacturer buys Tarpon Springs leather company

By Times Staff

A Tarpon Springs-based leather chamois company has been acquired.

Hopkins Manufacturing Corp. announced Tuesday that it has acquired Acme Chamois, a leather company that's part of the Acme Sponge and Chamois Co. group based in Tarpon Springs.

Acme Chamois has been producing the Tanner's Select brand of leather chamois products, synthetic cloths for drying and chamois-based wash sponges for 65 years, according to a press release. Acme will continue to operate its business as Acme Sponge, which was not part of the transaction. A sales price was not disclosed.

Hopkins is a Kansas-based manufacturer and distributor of towing products for cars and recreational vehicles. The acquisition will strengthen the company's leadership position in vehicle cleaning accessories, the release said.

"We're very excited that Hopkins will build on the heritage of the Tanner's Select brand into the future," said Jim Cantonis, president of Acme, in a statement. "Over the years we have been approached numerous times to sell our chamois business, now we have found the right fit. Hopkins has the right culture, it does business in the right manner and has an outstanding reputation in the industry; we could not think of a better partner to ensure the future for this business."

Hopkins will add an operations and distribution facility in Tarpon Springs as part of the acquisition.

Other recent acquisitions by Hopkins include Air Power America, an oil extraction company for automotive and marine engines; Bell Automotive Products, which makes interior vehicle accessories; and Mallory, a Canadian firm that makes snow tools in North America for gas station squeegees.