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Allen Edmonds Appreciation Thread - Page 2170

post #32536 of 46499
Someone posted about a sock of the month club earlier. I lost the link.

Anyone?

Bueller?
post #32537 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by USAmade View Post
 

Here's the deal for all those are concerned...  If you read the article, it is clear that the firm that bought the company in 2006 has held onto it long enough, and Paul has done an incredible job improving the bottom line, and taking the company to record sales growth, and they want to grow even more.  In order to finance the expansion of the factory (I heard they are upgrading their Port Washington facility to add a whole new line of production for custom orders, special requests, webgem's etc) they will need $$$.

 

If they are looking to complete this expansion, and open new stores, they will need to get the money from somewhere...it's just common business sense.  They have probably been talking to several other investors for a while now, whether they're venture capitalists, private equity firms, or other companies like Mens Warehouse... does it really matter?

 

They've been holding true to their American roots for 92 years, I think anyone would be an idiot to think that if they are bought by another company there would be a sacrifice in quality.  this is simply a fundraising effort to fuel their growth, and lets face it, for us that means more stores, better distribution, no sacrifice in quality, faster production, and will eventually lead to lower prices, or at least unchanged prices despite this shitty economy.

 

The last thing they want to do is lose customers, so do you really think an aquisition would do that?  No way!

 

I was just going to say "agree" here too, but you already said it for me in your post above.  :D

post #32538 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by USAmade View Post
 

Here's the deal for all those are concerned...  If you read the article, it is clear that the firm that bought the company in 2006 has held onto it long enough, and Paul has done an incredible job improving the bottom line, and taking the company to record sales growth, and they want to grow even more.  In order to finance the expansion of the factory (I heard they are upgrading their Port Washington facility to add a whole new line of production for custom orders, special requests, webgem's etc) they will need $$$. 

 

If they are looking to complete this expansion, and open new stores, they will need to get the money from somewhere...it's just common business sense.  They have probably been talking to several other investors for a while now, whether they're venture capitalists, private equity firms, or other companies like Mens Warehouse... does it really matter?

 

They've been holding true to their American roots for 92 years, I think anyone would be an idiot to think that if they are bought by another company there would be a sacrifice in quality.  this is simply a fundraising effort to fuel their growth, and lets face it, for us that means more stores, better distribution, no sacrifice in quality, faster production, and will eventually lead to lower prices, or at least unchanged prices despite this shitty economy.

 

The last thing they want to do is lose customers, so do you really think an aquisition would do that?  No way!

While I don't think that this will happen to AE, for the sake of the truth, JM has been made in the US for way longer than that. Yet, it didn't stop their parent company Genesco from moving most of the production overseas. 

post #32539 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by USAmade View Post

I heard they are upgrading their Port Washington facility to add a whole new line of production for custom orders, special requests, webgem's etc
I don't doubt it, but this is the first I've heard -- do you have a source? This would be utterly magnificent.
post #32540 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by cincikid View Post

While I don't think that this will happen to AE, for the sake of the truth, JM has been made in the US for way longer than that. Yet, it didn't stop their parent company Genesco from moving most of the production overseas. 
Good point. Most parent companies only care about one thing. The bottom line.
post #32541 of 46499
Trying out some shell cordovan MacNeils, which unfortunately don't fit perfectly, so they are for sale here.

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http://www.styleforum.net/t/366671/allen-edmond-macneil-shell-cordovan-8d
post #32542 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by tifosi View Post


Good point. Most parent companies only care about one thing. The bottom line.

Well, the point of having a business is to generate money and I think this is the right thing for companies to focus on. Without this focus, there would be no businesses left. I suspect, however, what you really mean, is that you want AE to continue delivering a valuable product rather than just a product. It is this characterization that I agree with you on. 

post #32543 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by JermynStreet View Post

Well, the point of having a business is to generate money and I think this is the right thing for companies to focus on. Without this focus, there would be no businesses left. I suspect, however, what you really mean, is that you want AE to continue delivering a valuable product rather than just a product. It is this characterization that I agree with you on. 
I want them to continue to delivering a valuable product manufactured in the USA
post #32544 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridethecliche View Post

Someone posted about a sock of the month club earlier. I lost the link.

Anyone?

Bueller?

http://soul-socks.com/

 

I went to the link the other day when it was posted. They don't ship to Canada, but I was able to buy 4 pairs at once and get them shipped for $3, as opposed to the monthly structure. Really nice guy running it. 

post #32545 of 46499

All very valid scenarios and maybe all true, to some extent - none of us know for sure.  My 3-bits (already gave my 2), is that MW would realize HUGE growth in the AE brand, just by offering it in even a percentage of their 1000+ stores.  AE is obviously profitable with online sales and a handful of banner stores, along with their few retail partners - nowhere near 1000 points of distribution.  Even if they hit 500-700 MW stores, will the 'current' AE be able to keep up?  Not without changes.  Will quality suffer?  We all hope not.  Will they be able to continue Paul's MTO offer?  I don't see how.  Will they continue all the special webgems and shell offerings?  Maybe that ties up resources for limited profit, that could be moved towards supplying their new distribution channel.   Of course everything I'm throwing out there is purely selfish, wanting AE to remain the flexible, creative, quality company they are today.  But from all the investment points made eloquently by members above, AE would only improve their bottom line by supplying their new masses.  Making one of us a MTO is a nice gesture, but how much does it add to their owner's bottom line?  Pumping out 5 times as many Strands and PAs does... It will sure be interesting to re-read all these comments in a year or two.  We all might be reflecting on "the good old days when I got a custom pair of shoes made by that little company Allen Edmonds before they became so big".

post #32546 of 46499

I 100% agree, the facts are the facts, however I think AE learned a thing or two from Cole Haan and J&M about the negative implications of going offshore, wouldnt you agree?

 

Both of their brands have suffered as a result, and I don't predict that would happen with AE.

post #32547 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by tifosi View Post


Good point. Most parent companies only care about one thing. The bottom line.

...and AE has shown that a company can be profitable and grow while keeping production in the US and quality high.

post #32548 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by JermynStreet View Post
 

Agreed. One more thing that is worth mentioning-look at the trajectory AE has followed since being taken over in 2008; before then, there was a lot more polished cobbler, dinky oxfords, no matching belts, and certainly a dearth of exotic cordovan colors. Change has been, if anything, kind to AE over its lifetime. I would argue that installing Grangaard has been the most valuable move to happen to AE in its history. But for the PE company buying AE, we might have not had the incredible stuff we see today. Secondly, I see no reason to believe that we will move production off shore. AE's China strategy is dependent on keeping production in America-without it, the Chinese would lose interest in the product and AE will lose out on an enormous market opportunity.

 

Looking at the totality of AE's offerings, they have a good amount of the low end of upper tier shoes pretty well covered; if anything, their most logical direction to increase growth in the shoe market is on their upper end, and I would not be surprised if we see an increased focus on that. As younger AE fans have an increasing income, AE would be smart to try to leverage the existing loyalty and goodwill it has with consumers to start making shoes on par with Alden, C&J, etc. I agree, that right now, AE's top end offerings cannot compete with these "better" brands' quality reputation, however, with a well capitalized company like MW behind them, AE might be better positioned to penetrate the high end market. I, for one, have been very satisfied with my AE calf shoes. As a result, I have ventured into AE's higher end cordovan offerings on more than one occassion. If AE made shoes that were finished as nice as Alden, C&J, etc. (AE would probably would need to up the stitches-per-inch, leather quality, and finishing), and my income rises, I would willingly and happily be willing to give AE a chance, and I'm a 28 year old lawyer. I see no reason why AE can't grow in the upper end while still dominating the entry-level high end footwear sector.

 

I never hide my admiration for Grangaard and think that whatever company buys AE would be wise to keep him on and raise his salary signficantly. The fact that he was able to increase market share in a decreasing household-wealth economy (far more dangerous than a decreasing household-income economy) speaks to his abilities to move a product.

 

Bottom line-either way, I think the future is bright for AE, and as long as they keep making good quality shoes, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and always be willing to try their newer offerings.

 

Ad astra, per aspera.

 

I'd agree with your theory of seeing more high end AE shoes in the future if it was Brooks Brothers buying AE.  It's Mens' Wearhouse, though, which means we're likely to see a great increase in the AE non-goodyear welted line of shoes that will now be offered at MW.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, though, as long as AE continues to maintiain the quality of its mainline and Independence line shoes and sells the higher end shoes at Nordstrom, Brooks Brothers and the AE stores.

post #32549 of 46499
I'm so frustrated by this discussion of the MW offer to purchase AE that I'm stepping away. The neat thing about a forum like this is that allows a community of interest to join in a conversation no matter where they may reside. It's hard to have a conversation, however, when so many people contributing to it have obviously not read the earlier relevant posts or ANY of the published news reports. I'm out. I still very much appreciate AE, but I'll leave this thread to people who prefer to send pictures of their feet to strangers than to engage in thoughtful discourse.
post #32550 of 46499
Quote:
Originally Posted by random-adam View Post


I don't doubt it, but this is the first I've heard -- do you have a source? This would be utterly magnificent.

Yeah, the guys in my local store said that's what they were doing.

 

 

A friend of mine went with me to the store and wanted to get a Neumok in cognac, or chili.  Neither of those colors are a part of their regular custom shoe ordering portal, and so they got in touch with a big wig in Port W/the factory who said "We're not at the point where we can make that shoe in those colors.  However, we're getting there."  He went on to say that hopefully within the next year the expansion will be complete and they will be able to put any upper on any sole they manufacture.

 

 

pretty much you will be able to order anything you want in 6-8 weeks

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