American Woolen Company
Jennifer Knight is a seasoned executive with over 15 years of C-level operating experience reporting to private equity sponsors. She began her career in her family’s textile business where she was a key member of the team who transformed a 30-year-old commodity manufacturer into an award-winning supplier to top U.S. apparel brands, and sold it for 31 times the original investment.
After getting her M.B.A from Columbia University, Jennifer returned to the company as CEO at the request of its private equity sponsors and led a second turnaround in a challenging market environment, achieving 27% revenue growth and 25% higher profit margins with new product lines in 24 months. Jennifer then led a deal to merge the company with its largest competitor, and was retained as President of the combined companies. In this role, she managed an executive team that oversaw a 450-person operation and the successful relocation of manufacturing from the U.S. to Central America and China.
Over the past 15 years, Jennifer has led teams during periods of growth and in lean times requiring significant cost reductions and refinancing. She also has extensive experience in Latin America and China in terms of sales, sourcing and manufacturing.
Most recently Jennifer was a partner with Newport Board Group, a partnership of board directors and senior executive leaders with deep knowledge of business strategy, operations and capital markets. In this role, she helped entrepreneurs and family-owned companies assess and develop their financial and operating strategies to fund growth, make strategic acquisitions, or prepare for sale to private equity or strategic buyers. She splits her time between Miami, Florida and New York City. She has a B.A. in Religious Studies from Brown University.
Currently, Jennifer is the President and Chief Operating Officer of the American Woolen Company.