We here at Underground Printing are in a celebratory mood! As you may have noticed by our modified logo, it’s our 20th Anniversary! That’s right, we have been in business since May of 2001!! For those who aren’t familiar with Our Story, we trace our roots all the way back to a University of Michigan dorm room.
That’s where childhood friends and co-founders, Ryan Gregg and Rishi Narayan, officially incorporated the business on May 10, 2001. The story goes that after a series of car troubles and an encounter with an enterprising tow-truck driver, they decided to follow their entrepreneurial spirit and purchase some basic screen printing equipment. They set up shop in a garage and started slinging custom t-shirts on campus.
From the early days, they hustled and were hyper-focused on customer service - willing to meet customers anytime and anywhere. They soon began taking on projects for family, friends, and local businesses. Contract after contract came and word quickly spread about Ryan and Rishi’s customer-centric approach to service. Their focus soon shifted to opening store locations in college towns across the midwest. They were able to successfully replicate the Ann Arbor store model in East Lansing, Champaign, Madison, West Lafayette, Bloomington, and more!
The high demand also quickly led to opening a state-of-the-art 55,000 square foot production facility on the west side of Ann Arbor where they had the ability to print 50,000 shirts in 8 hours! It’s where we still print t-shirts to this day.
Today Underground Printing has become one of the largest custom apparel providers in the country with 25 store locations in 13 states. We are the largest supplier of custom apparel to the University of Michigan and we currently employ more than 200 people.
Co-founder and CEO, Ryan Gregg remarked: "We have achieved this milestone through the hard work and dedication of our employees and the culture of customer service that exists throughout the entire organization. For 20 years, we have dedicated ourselves to providing our customers with the highest quality custom apparel products through innovation and customer service.”
“Our passion is ‘Building Great Relationships’, and we’ve looked to do that every day for the last two decades,” added co-founder and CRO, Rishi Narayan. “Throughout 2021, we hope to reflect on where we started from and what we have achieved in the communities that we serve. But right now, we’d like to take a moment to thank all of the Team Members, Customers, and Partners we’ve gotten to know over the years. Without each and every one of them, we wouldn’t be able to celebrate this milestone.”
Over the years, we have made the Inc. 5000 list, which honors the fastest-growing private companies in the US, nine times! We’ve also been committed to supporting our amazing communities and customers through our t-shirt fundraising efforts. We are proud to say that together with our customers, we have donated over $1 million dollars to numerous charities and causes. We’ve also been fortunate to print merchandise for the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals, and hold over 100 collegiate and university licenses. But what we are most proud of are the relationships we’ve made over the past two decades. In fact, some of those first customers who took a chance on a couple of teenagers are still UGP customers to this day!
We are so thankful for our incredible community: our customers, employees, suppliers, vendors, strategic partners, friends, family, and so many more who have helped us get to year 20! We have been so fortunate to have the successes we’ve had and we can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us!
Ryan and Rishi