The original Koho brand originated from Finland. Currently, Koho equipment is manufactured by The Hockey Company (parent company of Reebok/CCM). The main endorsees, instrumental to marketing the brand in the late 90s and early 2000s included Patrick Roy, Felix Potvin, Jocelyn Thibault, Tommy Salo, Mathieu Garon, Jean-Sebastien Giguere, and Roberto Luongo.
Beginning in the early 90s, later versions of Koho goal equipment were designed by goalie equipment guru Michel Lefebvre, who started with the 530 series, which were based on the pad which was sold previously under the Lefebvre brand. Lefebrve, contracted now to develop pads to be sold exclusively through the Koho brand, designed the 560, 570, 580, and 590 series. Beginning with the 560 series, Koho pads were designed exclusively by Lefebvre. The 590 was the last pad that Patrick Roy wore, during the 2002-03 season.
When The Hockey Company was purchased by Reebok in 2004, the Koho name was momentarily dropped and replaced by Reebok. However, a small tag with the Koho by Lefebvre logo appeared on the Reebok equipment. Initially, RbK was used for the pro and intermediate pro lines of equipment, while Reebok was reserved for all other lines (senior, junior, youth). When Reebok discontinued the use of Rbk in 2008, the Rbk branding was dropped from the hockey equipment as well.
When the NHL resumed play in the 2005-06 season following the lockout, only two goaltenders were using Koho equipment: Maxime Ouellet of the Vancouver Canucks and Jonas Hiller of the Anaheim Ducks. Ouellet used the entire 580 series, while Hiller used only the 580 leg pads, which were white and blue, matching the colors of his previous team, HC Davos. Because the Koho name had been dropped by the Hockey Company, which had not paid the NHL the appropriate licensing fees, the Koho name had to be removed from Hiller’s pads before he could appear in a game or in any league or team marketing materials. The Koho name remained on Ouellet’s pads, which was an oversight by the league.
In 2008, MonkeySports, Inc managed to bring back the Koho name, producing a set with the name “Koho 700.” The set included pads, blocker, glove, chest protector and a composite goal stick. None of these products were actually designed by Lefebvre, however. They are a pad designed for the hybrid goaltender, but nevertheless feel very similar to the Lefebvre Koho lines. At the start of the 2009-10 season, Hiller began play in his trademark 580s, along with custom Koho gloves, thus giving credence to earlier rumors of a new Koho pad. In either case, the Koho name was present on Hiller’s pads, indicating that MonkeySports, Inc. had successfully negotiated the licensing rights with the NHL, marking Koho’s official return to the NHL. Hiller debuted the Koho 588 pad in the beginning of the 2010-11 season.