SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) – Rich Brand never thought he’d be in the business of making bulletproof backpacks for kids.
He’s the Chief Operating Officer of Amendment II, the Salt Lake City company that’s original mission was to make lightweight body armor for military and law enforcement using one-of a kind nanotechnology developed at the University of Utah.
“We claimed since it’s so light and flexible, we can put it into anything,” said Brand. “We actually had a parent approach us at a trade show and ask us if we could put it in a backpack.”
The company’s founders never could foresee that a tragic school shooting in Connecticut six months later would skyrocket their sales.
Since Friday’s shooting, Amendment II’s sales have shot up 500 percent-- amounting to more than its total sales ever combined.
The company only has 15 employees now and believes an expansion will be needed to handle the huge demand.
“We’re just trying to keep up doing our best to get our product to these parents that are worried and want this protection,” said Brand.
At $150 a bag, parents across the country are willing to spend what it takes to protect their kids.
Amendment II has seen some backlash-- even death threats they say from people who accused them of trying to profit off the Sandy Hook tragedy.
Company leaders tell ABC4 that’s not their intention. Amendment II plans to donate 10 percent of their sales to the victims’ families.