The Biblist: Top 15 Christian-Owned Brands You May Not Know

The Biblist: Top 15 Christian-Owned Brands You May Not Know February 15, 2024

As we move along searching for story angles, Gospel truth, and a few other leads that inspire us to follow Jesus, some ideas motivate us writers. There was this time my beautiful, inquisitive, and sweet-toothed daughter went to a frozen yogurt shop. While pummeling a pint of strawberry banana with gummy worms, she was delightfully surprised when she discovered the shop was among several deeply religious, Christian-owned brands.

It’s a peculiar name, “Sweet Frog.” Now, warts aren’t a suggested part of a confectionary diet, so there is some reason for that amphibian-inspired name. That’s when we looked at the website and found that the toadstool upon which it sits was an acronym. “FROG” represents fully rely on God. So, yeah, that was sweet!

And that got her thinking, “Daddy?” (No, she isn’t six years old, but I insist on being called that until she is 84.) “Daddy? What other Christian-owned brands are out there that we don’t know are Christian-owned brands?”

Mary Kay Ash was a strong Christian woman of prayer

Everyone knows about the deep and wide Biblical values attested by Mary Kay, Walmart, Hobby Lobby, and Chic-fil-A. If you don’t believe that, consider the chicken place for example. What is the one day of the week that Americans almost universally crave those lovely nuggets? Sunday! Since they are closed on the Lord’s Day, people stop by whatever place is second on their list.

That’s where the fascination began with these surreptitious Christian-owned brands that don’t emphasize proselytizing.

What brands are excelling in Corporate America while they are building the Kingdom? Who are the people running these multinational to hyperlocal powerhouses and doing it in the Name of the Lord? There was some research in this list–one of many more in a new series we’re calling “The BIBList.

Once a month, at first, “Close to Home” will delve into a list that God’s people would like to know or may not realize they need to know. If you want to keep up with “The Biblist” or any other content that hits “Close to Home,” subscribe today! You’re welcome. Tell your pastor and pals in the church.

And away we go with the top 20 Christian-owned brands that you may not know…

15. Trijicon

Trijicon makes machine gun sighting and engraved scripture on them
“Made in USA,” “Reflex,” Blah Blah, and what’s that?! (Source: Trijicon via ABC News, 2010)

Founded in 1981, Trijicon is one of the most respected brands in firearms today. Formerly Armson USA, Trijicon is a respected contractor for the U.S. military and the Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG) creator. The company creates some of the best optical and reflex sights on the market, and they do it with Kingdom Building mentality.

Although no longer in practice, ABC News reported that Trijicon placed a “code” on 800,000 sights supplied to the Marines reading “2COR4:6.” (See image above.) Why would it matter? It was claimed that Trijicon was initiating its version of jihad against Al Qaeda. Of course, that not-so-cryptic code (and lovely piece of marketing) was 2 Corinthians 4:6:

For it is the God who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

(2 Corinthians 4:6 NKJV)

  • Headquarters: Wixom, Michigan
  • Industry: Firearms (Sighting Tools and Technology)
  • Employees: 200
  • Revenue: $50-$90 million

14. George Foreman Cooking

George Foreman holding his Bible in his church
Former “Rumble in the Jungle” Boxer and Current Pastor, George Foreman (Credit: Wilf Thorne via

It’s the brand that made grilling steak masterful for the novice. The “side gig” that went multimillion empire from its namesake, Boxing Hall of Famer, Olympic Gold Medalist, and historic two-time World Heavyweight Champion, George Foreman. Since 1994, more than 100 million grills have been sold. Once he sold the company for $138 million, the champ got 40% royalty on each grill. (Why so little for such a horse sold? Foreman didn’t invent or patent anything. It was his name only.)

That deal would make Shark Tank’s Mr. Wonderful green with envy. While George Foreman isn’t the most original thinker when it comes to naming his kids, he is an ardent follower of Jesus Christ. Since 1977, Foreman has dedicated his life and business (including being a pastor) to the Lord. And the grill was created to help subsidize his outreach ministries.

  • Headquarters: Madison, Wisconsin by way of Batavia, Illinois
  • Industry: Barbecue and Grill
  • Employees / Revenue: N/A, Now part of Spectrum Brands, a $5B company

13. Tom’s of Maine

Tom's of Maine says "Doing Good for Real"
Tom’s of Maine does good, but it’s because of Tom Chappell (Source: Tom’s of Maine)

Meet Tom Chappell. You wouldn’t know by looking at his organic hygiene company, but this is a man who runs his nationally regarded company upon Biblical dynamics. He is a silver fox who set his sights on becoming an angel. A lifelong adherent in The Episcopal Church, Tom has a mission statement that reads in part, “To help create a better world by exchanging faith, experience, and hope.”

That word is not by accident. If you require more proof, Tom Chappell is a graduate of Harvard Divinity School. And as a student, Tom met a professor who had a profound influence on his life telling him to “treat his business as a ministry.” He did.

  • Headquarters: Kennebunk, Maine
  • Industry: Personal Hygiene
  • Employees: 100
  • Revenue: $50-$80 million

12. Marriott International

Marriott International is one the Christian-owned brands that involve the Mormon Church
When Marriott merged with Starwood Hotels, 300,000 copies of “The Book of Mormon” scooted over the Gideons. (Source: John Burger via Aleteia, 2018)

Despite what you think about this particular destination of the saints, the Mormon Church diligently in paying it forward and giving back to their communities, like a certain staunch adherent named John Willard Marriott. He’s usually looking for a way to spread the Gospel. Like the time when Marriott merged with Starwood Hotels in 2018. Shortly after that merge was official, there were 300,000 copies of “The Book of Mormon” buried on the nightstand next to the similar gift from the Gideon’s.

Although Mr. J.W. Marriott went up to the penthouse, permanently (so to speak) in 1985, the family-owned and -operated chain still maintains faith-based values today. For example, Marriott made global news when it brightened up its rooms by eliminating the dark X-rated programming in 2011. This was a first among major hoteliers but not the last. Marriott also began the trend of no naughty PPVs either.

  • Headquarters: Bethesda, Maryland
  • Industry: Hospitality
  • Employees: 140,000
  • Revenue: $13-$23 billion

11. Curves

Curves franchises are faith-based businesses

The noted women-first business is a gym where all women feel safe and seen. It’s also influenced by a man who loves the Lord and has no qualms telling anyone about it. His name is Gary Heavin (coincidental spelling). Given that he is the founder of a successful business in the same place where Chip and Joanna Gaines call home, he’s relatively unassuming.

He opened his first Curves gym with his wife Diane in 1992. By 2006, he had a billion-dollar business. It’s fortunate that he is known for saying that he never takes God’s blessings for granted. While the blessing of the Lord never leaves, some earthly possessions may. After several gyms closed and the fitness club boon dwindled, it was time for God’s blessing to bloom anew. In February 2018, Japanese company Koshidaka Holdings Co Ltd., purchased Curves International

  • Headquarters: Waco, Texas
  • Industry: Fitness
  • Employees: 200
  • Revenue: $21 million

10. ServiceMaster

Servicemaster marketing
Source: Servicemaster Collateral

Never heard of them? It’s a parent company rich with Christian values. You may have heard–or even used–some of their brands: Terminix, Merry Maids, TruGreen, ChemLawn, AmeriSpec, Furniture Medic, Two Men and a Truck, Indoor Science and Aftermath Services. To set the stage for the foundation of this company, it’s all in the name.

In 1961, Marion Wade morphed his company’s name from Wade Wenger & Assoc. to eventually “The ServiceMaster Co,” as in “masters of service” and “serving their master.” In this case, that would be God Almighty. The brand’s story of faith-infused values, and built on two end goals: “To Honor God in All We Do” and “To Help People.”

  • Headquarters: Atlanta, GA
  • Industry: Professional Services
  • Employees: 13,000
  • Revenue: $2 billion

9. Forever 21

The bottom of Forever 21 bags may surprise you by witnessing for Jesus
Jesus probably didn’t shop at Forever 21, but that Bartholomew tho… (Source: Forbes)

The notable retailer known for looking like the tornado from The Wizard of Oz blew threw abandoned warehouses has handled its fair share of challenges. In 2019, Forever 21 filed for bankruptcy. In 2020, its 800+ U.S. stores were sold to Authentic Brands Group for $81 million. That’s a calamitous thud from the $6 billion its owners were worth in 2017. And, a little sad too.

Under each bag, South Korean immigrants Jin Sook and Do Won Chang, believed blank space was a blank slate for evangelism. The two are born-again Christians who were once the American dream–no English, no money, no degrees, and no direction in a new country. Then, they created Forever 21 and, to thank the Lord for His providence, they added John 3:16 with each bag.

If you’re a shopper, let us know if the hidden scripture is still part of the bagging tradition.

  • Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA
  • Industry: Retail
  • Employees: 30,000
  • Revenue: $4 billion, as part of Authentic Brands Group

8. Carls Jr.

Picture of El Diablo a hot cheeseburger
As a Christian-owned brand, we’re certain that praising “El Diablo” is only a marketing gimmick. Right? (Source:

Friends of the Snyder family (founders of #4 on the list), Carl and Margaret Karcher believed God led them to find fortune and fund Catholic-based outreaches worldwide. It happened, and the fortune created Carl’s Jr. The faith oozes more from the business than grease from the patties on the grill. Carl began a tradition that allegedly sticks to this day–every location meeting begins with prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance.

Parents of 12 children (and one priest), the Karchers use proceeds to benefit several mission-oriented organizations. One was founded by their son, Fr. Jerome Karcher, called Mercy House. The mission is to end homelessness and those afflicted with AIDS. Now known as CKE Restaurants Holdings, Inc., they purchased Hardee’s in 1997, when it had more than 2,500 locations. Despite Carl dying of Parkinson’s-related pneumonia in 2008 or Roark Capital Group‘s purchase of the brand in 2013, the faith-based practices are sustained in the brand.

  • Headquarters: Franklin, TN
  • Industry: Food and Beverage
  • Employees: 10,000 – 12,000
  • Revenue: $1.1 billion

7. eHarmony

Man and woman sitting in the grass reading a Bible
Okay. This is a real picture, although not that realistic. (Source: iStockPhoto)

If you’re a Christian and single (recently or otherwise), you know the name “eHarmony.” It is a juggernaut among those looking for love apps, at least it was when it first went online in 2000. The premise was different than the other swipers–it’s based on a formula to help match people before their subjective preferences get in the way.

Co-founder Dr. Neil Clark Warren is the happy guy in all the commercials extolling the greatness of the matching system. Warren, 81, is a devout theologian (Princeton Theological Seminary, M. Div.) and Christian psychologist (University of Chicago, Ph.D.). He is close with his son-in-law, Greg Forgatch. In fact, that’s his partner and co-founder at eHarmony. Following Warren’s development of the 29 Dimensions of Compatibility Questionnaire, he partnered with Dr. Galen Buckwalter, a renowned psychoanalyst who helped formulate the algorithm. And the rest is dating history.

  • Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA
  • Industry: Relationships
  • Employees: 150-200
  • Revenue: $16-$20 million
*AUTHOR’S NOTE: Dr. Buckwalter is a personal friend and one of the most brilliant and kind people you’d ever want to meet. And, yes, that’s a little of a flex. It’s a great icebreaker at Bible studies.

6. Timberland

Biggie Smalls in his Timbs and making them rich
Notorious B.I.G. in Brooklyn with Junior Mafia crew in 1995 (Source: New York Daily News Archive)

The working man’s boot and the ’90s rapper’s footwear, Timberland is a celebrated brand among people from most walks of life. (See what we did there?)

Its rich history dates back to 1918, when a Jewish-Russian cobbler named Nathan Swartz started making some tan work boots in the Southie district of Boston. The New England roots eventually stretched to New York, and in the 1990s, the hip-hop legend Biggie Smalls rhymed about his “Timbs for my hooligans in Brooklyn” (“Hypnotize,” 1997, Bad Boy Music), and the icon was born.

In a 2008 Fast Company profile, Swartz shared how fame didn’t change his soul:

It says in the Hebrew Bible one time that you should love your neighbor as yourself, but it says dozens of times that you shall treat the stranger with dignity.

  • Headquarters: Stratham, New Hampshire
  • Industry: Footwear
  • Employees: 50,000
  • Revenue: $50-70 billion (As part of VF Corporation [i.e., Vans, The North Face, EastPak, Icebreaker])

5. Alaska Air

Alaska Airlines and its famous prayer cards
For more than 50 years, Alaska Airlines passed out prayer cards to patrons. (Source: AP/File)

As quiet as it may be, Alaska Air is growing a force of nature between the Puget Sound and Northern Lights. The airline is positioned to take over Hawaiian Airlines for $1.9 billion. Last year, it was rumored to snag the low-budget cruiser, Spirit Airlines. Its initial conquest was Horizon Air in 1986.

Yet, the airline’s top headline grab was in April 2016 when it gave Sir Richard Branson $4 billion for his Virgin Airlines. The “Big Four” of American, Southwest, United, and Delta may have to make room on the bench for one more. And all the while (at least, since the mid-1970s to the mid-2010s), each customer receives a pleasant (and proselytizing) card on their food tray with several excerpts in Psalms, like:

“I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O’ Most High.”

(Psalm 9:2 NKJV)

A few of those cards are witnessing tracks. That many to those many people? That’s a global ministry. All aboard!

  • Headquarters: Seattle, Washington
  • Industry: Aviation
  • Employees: 23,000
  • Revenue: $2.8 billion (As part of VF Corporation [i.e., Vans, The North Face, EastPak, Icebreaker])

4. In-N-Out Burger

John 3:16 In-N-Our Burger Christian-Owned Brands
Life may not be everlasting eating burgers. (Source: Bloomberg/Getty Images)

Are the burgers and fries at In-N-Out Burger so good that opening weekend drive-thru lines could rival the traffic of people crossing the Red Sea when God made the water stand at attention? That’s subjective, but there is no debating the support that keeps the lights on. The next time you are guzzling soda and a Double-Double, look under the cup and you’ll see Jesus joining you for a bite.

In 2019, patrons of the West Coast fast food mecca got a rare glimpse into why the famous note of evangelism is buried under their cups. Lynsi Snyder, CEO of most iconic Christian-owned brands, spoke to The Christian Post about the inspiration. Her dad passed unexpectedly when she was young. Synder tried to quell the grief with drugs during three marriages, one ending in abuse. Then, she met Jesus, and that changed everything.

And soda cups where we find John 3:16–then, french fries containers, which feature Proverbs 24:16, and milkshake cups with Proverbs 3:5, and underneath coffee cops sharing Luke 6:35. She got that idea from her Uncle Rich.

  • Headquarters: Irvine, California
  • Industry: Food and Drink
  • Employees: 27,000
  • Revenue: $3 billion

3. Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods is one of the only Christian-owned brands that has a full Chaplain Program
For 20 years, Tyson Foods has grown a national Chaplaincy Program with more than 100 people ministering the Gospel. (Source:

If you ever eat good chicken from Tyson Foods, and exclaim, “God, this is good,” you would be talking to the right person. Tyson Foods is one of the largest protein providers, processors, manufacturers, and suppliers worldwide.

The “5Cs” are the core values of Tyson–Caring, Candor, Creativity, Collaboration, and Commitment. But there is one other that is above them all–Christ. Billionaire businessman and proud native of Arkansas, John Tyson, has deep roots in the United Methodist Church. When he bought Hudson Foods in 1998, the idea of a Chaplain Program sparked to help the staff. Today, at Tyson Foods, two decades later, that program is 100 people strong–all dedicated to serving Christ and helping others do the same.

  • Headquarters: Springdale, Arkansas
  • Industry: CPG / Manufacturing
  • Employees: 30,000
  • Revenue: $52 billion

2. Wendy’s

A Frosty cup from Wendy's
“A joyful heart makes a cheerful face.” [Prov. 15:13 NIV] (Source: via Getty Images)
When Wendy’s began doing commercials in 1977, the home of the Frosty and the square hamburger patty rose to stardom. By March 1978, they had 1,000 restaurants nationwide. This is a pioneer in the fast-food world–it’s also the home of the drive-thru window. With ads, food, and franchising, Wendy’s became well-known and respected. Yet, when Dave Thomas first appeared in 1989, America was introduced to the faith behind the brand, the foundation underneath the man.

Dave was proud of being adopted, and because of that, was a force of change for the foster community through his foundation. Oddly enough, he learned his convictions through the Word of God, but he learned about implementing those Godly values through his mentor in business and faith, Colonel Harlan Sanders of KFC fame. (Yes, the Colonel.) Dave’s values were part of his business and character — “do the right thing,” “treat people with respect,” and “giving back.”

All are based on the Bible.

  • Headquarters: Dublin, Ohio
  • Industry: Food and Beverage
  • Employees: 14,500
  • Revenue: $2.2 billion

1. Interstate Batteries

When business people and franchise owners think about Interstate Batteries’ glowing approvals, they usually conjure the gigantic smile and generous spirit of former President and CEO Norm Miller. 

He makes no apologies on the official Interstate Batteries website for his customers and franchisees. Only a couple of clicks, and you are in the middle of a radical sermon. It reads that the mission is “to glorify God as we supply our customers worldwide with top quality, value-priced batteries, related electrical power-source products, and distribution services.”

And since we have been prattling on about Christian-owned Brands, as well as getting people around on the Gospel Message of Interstate, there’s one more–“I Am Second.” He races cars and equips them. He sells batteries and gives souls the juice they need to live.

This man’s work was promised to him by the Lord, who confirmed his promise through Norm’s friends. Norm used archaeology, devotion to the Word, and a note about the fruit of the Gospel to confirm wanted to use him to create “I am Second.” His journey in the Word and business is the same–“Show me your ways, Lord.” (Psalm 25:4)

As long as God does His part, Norm Miller still has work to do–in NASCAR, for franchises, batteries of all kinds, and for the Kingdom!

  • Headquarters: Springdale, Arkansas
  • Industry: CPG / Manufacturing
  • Employees: 30,000
  • Revenue: $52 billion
About Shawn Paul Wood
Shawn Paul Wood is an award-winning copywriter, storyteller, and best-selling ghostwriter of several faith-based books who has worked for some of the most admirable brands in their respective industries for more than 20 years. As Founder of Woodworks Communications with a doctorate in Theology, he leads teams of content strategists and marketing professionals to expand the brands and audiences of corporate leaders, serial entrepreneurs, and respected ministers of the Gospel. Prior to working with global communications agencies, he was a media relations director and communications executive for noted leaders, such as Abide, D/FW International Airport, UNCF, Mannatech, Christians United for Israel, Avocados from Mexico, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, Darden, and Bishop T.D. Jakes. His purpose is to help others develop self-discovery through stories and the written word to proclaim the Word to the world. For more information or help, visit You can read more about the author here.

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