About Our Panama Hat Factory:
Situated on the banks of the Rio Tomebamba, in the beautiful colonial city of Cuenca, Ecuador, the Barranco's Panama Hat Factory has been making quality panama hats for the last 68 years. The factory has become a popular place to visit (as listed in the Lonely Planet) because the museum provides daily tours to the public on the past and current ways of producing the different kinds of panama hats.
About our online service to online customers:
Starting in January 2010, the Paredes Roldan family, who have owned and managed the business since 1942, decided that using an e-commence approach would be the next best thing for those who weren't able to come and visit their factory in Cuenca.
Also the factory is seeking new opportunities to find new buyers (Retail/Wholesale) to increase new business leads.Why this is so important is because the average monthly wage in Ecuador is $380 per month. Buy selling online the factory can offer panama hat styles and grades not offered online. By increasing more business the factory will start increasing factory wages and offering benefits for its workers.
More About History of our Factory in Cuenca, Ecuador:
Originally the factory exported panama hats north from Cuenca, Ecuador to Panama City by horse back. Panama hats were taken to Panama City because its was a prime export hub in the early years of the panama hat industry.
The trail was tough and would take many weeks using horses to transport panama hats from our factory. In the 1960's through the 1980's the factory started exporting unfinished panama hats directly to English merchants in Britain for them to be finished there.
Starting in 1990, the factory imported necessary equipment from Brazil to finish panama hats so visitors could buy directly from our factory in Cuenca. And today the factory is very busy spot for tourists to learn how panama hats are made and try on hats never before seen!