The relationship between distributors and the suppliers they work with is fundamental to success in the promotional products industry. Some suppliers go the extra mile to make that relationship run smoother, respond more efficiently and be more fruitful for all involved. PPAI’s Supplier Stars award recognizes those suppliers who have gone above and beyond.

The 24 companies recognized here have been chosen by industry distributors for the quality of their communications, customer service, products, decorating and packaging.

The Supplier Star is one of four PPAI Pyramid Awards, the industry’s pinnacle of achievement, now in its 66th year. Distributors cast their votes for one supplier in each of 12 categories. This annual competition is open to all PPAI supplier members in good standing who update their sales volume every two years as required and maintain a SAGE supplier rating of A or higher.

New Supplier Member

Supplier Star

Stellar Lanyards North America
Miami, Florida

With over a decade in business as a leading dye sublimation textile manufacturer in Mexico, Stellar Lanyards specializes in producing lanyards, wristbands, hats and drawstring bags. Stella Lanyards is now entering the U.S. promotional market, offering fully in-house production, which eliminates overseas sourcing dependencies. The company operates as an audited facility, ensuring compliance with international and labor standards for the manufacturing of licensed merchandise.

Supplier Award of Merit

Sweeter Cards
St. Louis, Missouri

Sweeter Cards, a WBENC certified business, merges the worlds of greeting cards and gourmet chocolate bars into one. The company is committed to ethical practices, exclusively using fair-trade certified chocolates. The chocolates are crafted using clean ingredients free from artificial flavors, colors, preservatives and hydrogenated oils. Sweeter Cards is also dedicated to sustainability, using recyclable card packaging and vegetable-based inks. Beyond their product, the company embodies inclusivity, employing adults with disabilities.


Supplier Star

Totally Bamboo
San Marcos, California

Totally Bamboo’s journey began as a different company – Hollywood Chairs in North Hollywood. Seeking to enhance their foldable chairs, the company turned to bamboo for its strength and lightness. Inspired by its eco-friendly properties, the company pioneered the first bamboo cutting board, marking the birth of Totally Bamboo. The company showcases its commitment to sustainability and ingenuity by introducing groundbreaking products like the first laminated bamboo salad bowl and dishwasher-safe bamboo cutting board.

Supplier Award of Merit

GMG Works
Lakewood, New Jersey

From designing and providing free customized virtuals and samples to delivering products promptly, GMG Works ensures that clients stay ahead in the promotional producst market and top of mind for their clients. With a history of selling more than 1 billion pens, the company boasts a commitment to fast turnaround and competitive pricing. GMG Works offers a comprehensive line of drinkware, notebooks, mugs, clips, poker chips, highlighters, magnets and other promotional items.


Supplier Star

YM Labs
Clearfield, Utah

Founded in 1993, YM Labs introduced high-intensity flavored lip balms to the promotional products industry when basic flavors dominated the market. Today, the company goes beyond lip balms, now producing hand sanitizers, lotions, gels, sunscreen products and more in its Utah factory, which handles compounding, filling and labeling in house. Operating as an FDA-compliant facility following cGMP guidelines, the company now offers over 30 stock lip balm flavors.

Supplier Award of Merit

Illinois Glove Company
Northbrook, Illinois

Illinois Glove Company is a fourth-generation family business, offering custom-imprinted gloves tailored to every promotion and budget. The company handles in-house printing using high-quality methods and equipment to ensure that client logos and safety messages look their best on its gloves. Illinois Glove Company gloves have safeguarded workers in oilfields, utilities, factories and mines, as well as American soldiers in four wars.

$500,001-$1 Million

Supplier Star

Syosset, New York

WOWLine, a third-generation family-owned business, has been in business for more than 50 years. Previously known as Many Mini Toys, the company is known for toys, games, puzzles and novelties, but more recently branched out to add practical items for the kitchen, health and wellness, pets and much more. The CPSIA-compliant company has also made significant strides in promoting eco-friendly materials, with products made from materials such as bamboo, recycled paper and recycled plastic.

Supplier Award of Merit

Indianapolis, Indiana

For over 40 years, EMT has delivered exceptional brand and recognition experiences through a variety of custom-made products. The trusted supplier of lapel pins, patches and emblematic jewelry remains committed to a singular vision, “to delight, unite and inspire the world, one emblem at a time.”

$1,000,001-$2.5 Million

Supplier Star

Lorton, Virginia

With an initial focus on lanyards and ID products, imprintID has expanded its product lines to include tech accessories, drinkware, apparel, headwear, office supplies and more. ImprintID also offers a variety of decorating methods, including die cut, screen print, heat press, color/full-bleed sublimation, embossing, embroidery and more. The company strives to provide the best customer experience without hassle and instill confidence in every order.

Supplier Award of Merit

Bentcil Company
Indianapolis, Indiana

Originally focusing on bent pencils and bent pens, Bentcil Company has been a presence in the promotional product industry for over 40 years. Originating with American-made bent pencils and later introducing bent pens, the company’s creative product line has continually evolved. Its original creations include Smashlights, Gato Clips, Dateline Calendars, Bentcils and Inkbend. Most of Bentcil’s products are designed in the USA.

$2,500,001-$5 Million

Supplier Star

Jornik Manufacturing
Stamford, Connecticut

Jornik Manufacturing is a family-owned and operated supplier. Jornik offers a vibrant, wide range of products across all categories and stands out for its emphasis on product responsibility practices. In support of its responsibility goals, the company works to ensure that its core products are not just designed but engineered, manufactured, tested and inspected to exceed expectations.

Supplier Award of Merit

AZX Sport
Tonawanda, New York

AZX Sport offers a blend of domestic production on both the East Coast and West Coast, coupled with overseas sourcing. Having been in business for over 20 years, AZX has built a reputation for quality and customer service, reflected in their several industry awards. The company operates facilities in New York, California and Canada and upholds a strong commitment to product responsibility and ethical conduct.

$5,000,001-$10 Million

Supplier Star

Raining Rose
Cedar Rapids, Iowa

A full-service manufacturer, Raining Rose specializes in personal care products such as lip balms, sunscreens and lotions. The company is guided by its core values encapsulated in ASPIRE: Attitude, Safety, Passion, Integrity, Relationship and Evolve. With regular third-party audits, their FDA-registered facility is certified for USDA organic production. Raining Rose is also a certified B Corporation, reflecting its commitment to high standards of accountability.

Supplier Award of Merit

Towel Specialties
Baltimore, Maryland

Towel Specialties is a family-owned business that began in 1985 with a goal to provide innovative products and unsurpassed customer service. Many of the company’s employees and outside sales reps have more than 20 years of service, providing continuity and product knowledge to keep customers coming back year after year. Its lineup of products includes beach and golf towels, beach accessories, blankets, robes and more. In addition, Towel Specialties facilities have been audited for product safety, product quality, social accountability, environmental stewardship and supply chain security.

$10,000,001-$20 Million

Supplier Star

Pro Towels
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pro Towels – the No. 42 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – has built a varied product line encompassing beach, golf and sport towels. The company offers in-house screen printing and embroidery services, along with domestic manufacturing capabilities. Based in Pittsburgh, the company also operates facilities in Camarillo, California; Abbeville County, South Carolina; and Richmond, British Columbia.

Supplier Award of Merit

Fields Manufacturing
St. Cloud, Minnesota

Fields Manufacturing was established more than 30 years ago to bring a selection of branded merchandise to the promotional products industry, from lanyards and drinkware to die-cast vehicles. It is the parent company of the American Greenwood, Better Life Line, Sprout Tyme and TargetLine brands and offers a diverse range of products.

$20,000,001-$35 Million

Supplier Star

Shelbyville, Tennessee

Goldstar – the No. 16 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – manufactures customized writing instruments, drinkware and bags, and ships from locations in California, Tennessee, Ireland and the Czech Republic. The company offers full-color decoration, large imprint areas and high-capacity laser engraving in addition to free creative, on-demand sales and marketing tools.

Supplier Award of Merit

Starline USA
Grand Island, New York

Starline USA – the No. 13 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – specializes in delivering quality, high-end gifts and awards from name brands like uniball, Stanley, Pelican and more. Starline prides itself on its patented and award-winning TruColor digital decoration technique, a technology with the capability of printing standard one-color or multi-color logos, photographs, tight registration and logos with half-tones or gradients. The company emphasizes a commitment to innovative design, with 90% of last year’s sales comprising products introduced within the past five years.

$35,000,001-$50 Million

Supplier Star

Gold Bond
Hixson, Tennessee

Gold Bond has evolved from a small pencil company to the No. 22 supplier in the PPAI 100, operating out of three facilities on two continents. The company supplies hard goods, apparel and accessories and prides itself on being large enough to handle demanding orders while small enough to be flexible in accommodating customer requests. Gold Bond says its greatest asset is its ability to adapt to the ever-changing needs of its partners, and each team member strives to exceed customer expectations.

Supplier Award of Merit

Union, Illinois

BAG MAKERS – the No. 23 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – is a supplier of printed bags, specializing in a diverse range including non-woven, PET non-woven, paper, plastic, polyester, laminated, cotton/jute and mesh bags. The company delivers quality imprints, products and service and offers custom design capabilities, free artwork services and rush options. BAG MAKERS prides itself on its on-time shipping performance and customer satisfaction and is certified as a Women-Owned Business Enterprise.

$50,000,001-$100 Million

Supplier Star

Ariel Premium Supply
St. Louis, Missouri

With an initial focus on stress relievers, Ariel Premium Supply has evolved to design and decorate thousands of products across dozens of categories. The No. 15 supplier in the PPAI 100 and celebrating its 30th year in the industry, Ariel Premium Supply has grown to be a global operation with production and sourcing offices in five countries. The company has now shifted its focus toward sustainability, actively pursuing the development of more eco- friendly products.

Supplier Award of Merit

Lawrence, Massachusetts

Founded in 1958, Gemline – the No. 5 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – supplies bags, business accessories, stationary, drinkware, gifts and writing instruments to the promotional products market. Its diverse product portfolio includes offerings from multiple house brands such as Aviana, Gourmet Expressions and Vertex, alongside trusted consumer brands like Moleskine, Samsonite and Igloo. Headquartered in Massachusetts with a presence in southern China, Gemline employs over 500 professionals worldwide.

More Than $100 Million

Supplier Star

Issaquah, Washington

SanMar is the largest supplier of wholesale imprintable clothing and accessories in the United States, earning its place as the No. 1 supplier in the inaugural PPAI 100. Founded more than 50 years ago with a core philosophy of “Be Nice and Tell the Truth,” the family-owned company operates eight distribution centers nationwide and represents over 30 brands. SanMar offers service on a wide range of retail and private-label imprintable apparel and accessories.

Supplier Award of Merit

Trevose, Pennsylvania

With a portfolio of more than 6,500 styles from more than 80 brands, alphabroder – the No. 3 supplier in the 2023 PPAI 100 – offers classic and trending apparel, along with an array of products like drinkware, bags, journals and technology items. The company’s 10 distribution and production facilities strategically cover 99% of the U.S. population with one- to two-day shipping and operates under the vision statement, “Be the most trusted and valued partner for branded products and services.”