Ski Goggle Maker Smith Optics Is Leaving Idaho, Taking With It 85 Jobs

Oct 22, 2014

Credit talksrealfast / Flickr Creative Commons

A central Idaho company whose founder invented the double-lensed, vented ski goggle that is now the industry standard is moving operations and 85 jobs out of the resort town of Ketchum.

Smith Optics announced Monday that its design headquarters will move to Portland, Oregon, during the first half of 2015.

Other parts of the company are moving to Clearfield, Utah, or Parsippany, New Jersey, over the next three years.

Robert Earl "Bob" Smith came up with the double-lens goggles in the 1960s and patented his invention. He died in 2012 at age 78

Smith Optics is owned by Italian eyewear corporation Safilo Group. CEO Luisa Delgado visited Ketchum on Monday and says the plan is to have Smith Optics be a global brand by 2020.