QCA FILES FOR NOT-FOR-PROFIT STATUS

Quality Certification Alliance makes progress on becoming a membership-based organization.

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON (June 4, 2009) – Since the Quality Certification Alliance’s inception, its 14 founding members have been building the group and its standards, and they are now ready to form a not-for-profit organization. On Friday, May 29, QCA filed articles of incorporation for not-for-profit status with the IRS.

Once the 501 (c) 6 status is granted later this year, QCA will be able to open itself up for membership to industry firms that import and/or manufacture promotional products. “The organization always envisioned itself opening up for membership,” said D E Fenton, QCA executive director. “For the past five months, we’ve been working diligently to fulfill our commitment to the industry to develop an organization and provide tools that will serve to validate members’ compliance efforts. With bylaws complete and our application now made, that process has been accelerated.”

QCA is also in the process of developing a number of member benefits to help industry practitioners increase their knowledge of the important issues facing all of us today. In addition to having a leadership role in improving industry standards, QCA members benefit from negotiated audit costs, special pricing on fluorescent x-ray guns for product testing and lower advertising rates within industry publications. Members will also receive access to tools that help with certificate of conformity as well as regular updates on the ever-changing laws that affect our ability to safely and confidently do business.

“Given how dynamic, complex and sometimes vague regulatory issues can be, it is useful to have a group of companies committed to quality that can share knowledge and best practices,” said Jonathan Isaacson, CEO of Lawrence, Massachusetts-based Gemline and QCA founding member. “But the QCA initiative goes beyond helping members design processes and procedures to insure the promotional products we manufacture and import meet appropriate standards today and in the future. The outcomes give our customers the ability to buy with confidence as it relates to quality and compliance—and this benefits the industry as a whole.”

About QCA:
Seattle, Washington-based Quality Certification Alliance is an independent accreditation organization that addresses the need for measurable compliance and particularly product safety within the promotional products industry. The common standards upon which QCA measures compliance are based upon a combination of state and national laws, international standards and industry-accepted best practices that are recognized for their strength and effectiveness by QCA members, the promotional products industry and the end-user clients. Accreditation is granted to member companies’ whose policies and procedures meet compliance standards in five areas: product safety, product quality, social compliance, supply chain safety and environmental stewardship.

The road to accreditation begins with a stringent self-assessment process that prepares the member company for an independent, third-party audit. After completion of the third-party audit, a scorecard is issued based on audit performance in the five measured areas. The QCA board uses the scorecard as the foundation for granting accreditation. Only those organizations achieving the highest assessments in their headquarters and across their supply base are awarded accreditation.

Receiving QCA accreditation is evidence of compliance with the highest product standards in the market, and it addresses the public’s increasing concern about product safety. It symbolizes a company’s credibility and responsibility to the public as well as its customers, business partners and financial institutions. Additionally, QCA certification helps protect a company’s brand and reputation, while opening doors to accounts with the most demanding purchasing standards.

QCA was formed in July 2008 by 14 companies that import and/or manufacturer promotional products: Avaline; Barton Nelson, Inc.; BDA Inc.; Broder Bros.; Dard Products, Inc.; Fanda Enterprises, Inc.; Gemline; Gordon Industries, Ltd.; Leed’s; Litehouse Custom Printing, Inc.; Logomark, Inc.; MMI International Trade; Prime Resources, Corp.; and Sweda Company, LLC.

For more information, visit www.qcalliance.org.

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Media Contact:
Lisa Horn, CAS
214-674-8400
lisa_k_horn@hotmail.com

Company Contact:
D E Fenton
206-448-6271
dfenton@qcalliance.org