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Brooks Brothers Bankruptcy Thread

comrade

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"That's also amusing about there being few sales in-store. You'd think that, of all places, people in Palo Alto would have heard of the internet and online shopping."

True. I've been in this area for 30+ years. For most of that time, there's been a BB at that
location and for the past 20 years, as well as a Wilkes Bashford, not counting the Nieman
Marcus mens shop.
 
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Mark Seitelman

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They're planning to close 3 US factories.

What has happened to the three factories? Has any company purchased any of them? Or are they gone, gone, gone?

If the tie company has closed, it is a shame because it employed many older, immigrant workers. These workers will not be able to secure new work, and they will be forced to retire.

As for the future of Brooks Brothers, I am sorry to say that I do not see much of a future. It will be a shell of its former self. (It already was a shell in decline for decades.) In the worst possible scenario the Brooks name will survive on cheapo clothing made by low end makers on a licensing deal and sold at schlock stores. The best possible scenario is that it becomes primarily an internet company and that it keeps some semblance of quality.

One of the new buyers, Authentic Brands, specializes in buying the name and intellectual property and licensing it to other makers. See https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/08/business/retail-bankruptcy-authentic-brands.html?searchResultPosition=2 . It is primarily in the game to sell licenses to others to exploit the brand name and place it on other, new products.

The other partner in the business , the Simon Property, is in it purely to keep tenants in their malls.

Neither Authentic nor Simon purchased the prior companies with the viewpoint of running the companies.

A telling note is that the main store at 346 Madison has remained shuttered since the pandemic hit. In the meantime, the surrounding merchants, such as Paul Stuart and J. Press, have re-opened.
 
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comrade

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It could go they way of distinguished San Francisco clothier
Bullock and Jones which closed in 1999, with a brief revival
at a smaller location in the early 2000s . It is now a low profile
website selling mediocre menswear:

 
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comrade

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What has happened to the three factories? Has any company purchased any of them? Or are they gone, gone, gone?

If the tie company has closed, it is a shame because it employed many older, immigrant workers. These workers will not be able to secure new work, and they will be forced to retire.

As for the future of Brooks Brothers, I am sorry to say that I do not see much of a future. It will be a shell of its former self. (It already was a shell in decline for decades.) In the worst possible scenario the Brooks name will survive on cheapo clothing made by low end makers on a licensing deal and sold at schlock stores. The best possible scenario is that it becomes primarily an internet company and that it keeps some semblance of quality.

One of the new buyers, Authentic Brands, specializes in buying the name and intellectual property and licensing it to other makers. See https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/08/business/retail-bankruptcy-authentic-brands.html?searchResultPosition=2 . It is primarily in the game to sell licenses to others to exploit the brand name and place it on other, new products.

The other partner in the business , the Simon Property, is in it purely to keep tenants in their malls.

Neither Authentic nor Simon purchased the prior companies with the viewpoint of running the companies.

A telling note is that the main store at 346 Madison has remained shuttered since the pandemic hit. In the meantime, the surrounding merchants, such as Paul Stuart and J. Press, have re-opened.
Hi Mark. Good to hear from you. You are one the few
people on SF who remembers NY men's shops of yore,
eg, Casual Aire, Mens Town and Country, the London Shop (shirts)
Andre Oliver, Kaiser, Dunhill Tailors, H.Herzfeld (more recent), etc.
 
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NYCTechNerd

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It appears they continue to dump product and lately have had these daily flash sales with some items up to 70% off. I can only assume this is the best way to streamline as they move forward but I am not sure why they are discounting classic product that has been selling well literally forever. I would think they might want to dump trendy stock that has not sold well.

As an example, about 2 weeks ago "must-iron" button down dress shirts which I have worn for more than 30 years and are normally $69.50, at Xmas are often 40% which makes them $41.70, were only $25.35 or about 65% off. I stocked up and bought 10 (2 each of white, blue, light blue, pink, and blue stripe).


And I got a few of the oxford cloth button down original polo as well:
Normally $140, on-sale usually for $99, and during flash sale for $45.40 each or about 68% off.
 
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Oshare

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I think they are clearing out their stores. A lot of those sale items are very limited sizes and quantities.

A week ago I ordered 3 pants, a pair of socks, and 2 books. Every item was shipped from a different location, and one of the pants turned out to be out of stock and that part of my order was cancelled.
 

Nobilis Animus

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What has happened to the three factories? Has any company purchased any of them? Or are they gone, gone, gone?

If the tie company has closed, it is a shame because it employed many older, immigrant workers. These workers will not be able to secure new work, and they will be forced to retire.

As for the future of Brooks Brothers, I am sorry to say that I do not see much of a future. It will be a shell of its former self. (It already was a shell in decline for decades.) In the worst possible scenario the Brooks name will survive on cheapo clothing made by low end makers on a licensing deal and sold at schlock stores. The best possible scenario is that it becomes primarily an internet company and that it keeps some semblance of quality.

One of the new buyers, Authentic Brands, specializes in buying the name and intellectual property and licensing it to other makers. See https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/08/business/retail-bankruptcy-authentic-brands.html?searchResultPosition=2 . It is primarily in the game to sell licenses to others to exploit the brand name and place it on other, new products.

The other partner in the business , the Simon Property, is in it purely to keep tenants in their malls.

Neither Authentic nor Simon purchased the prior companies with the viewpoint of running the companies.

A telling note is that the main store at 346 Madison has remained shuttered since the pandemic hit. In the meantime, the surrounding merchants, such as Paul Stuart and J. Press, have re-opened.
Brooks Brothers hadn't been itself for decades. I remember walking into their store a few years back and walking straight out soon after, as the only things I could find that weren't made in China were their oxford-cloth shirts, and those weren't the right cut, etc.

And this from an American company. If you can imagine it, once upon a time they used to have a custom-orders department with tailors on-site!

Its clientele moved on post-70s or so. They had a brief resurgence from upper-middle-class imitators of the blue bloods in the 80s and 90s, but that quickly went away. Once that happened, it was only a matter of time, as the next market tier down doesn't care.
 

Viral

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Brooks Brothers hadn't been itself for decades. I remember walking into their store a few years back and walking straight out soon after, as the only things I could find that weren't made in China were their oxford-cloth shirts, and those weren't the right cut, etc.

And this from an American company. If you can imagine it, once upon a time they used to have a custom-orders department with tailors on-site!

Its clientele moved on post-70s or so. They had a brief resurgence from upper-middle-class imitators of the blue bloods in the 80s and 90s, but that quickly went away. Once that happened, it was only a matter of time, as the next market tier down doesn't care.
good luck shopping if all you look for is non-MIC stuff.........why does that even matter??
 

Balearic Dandy

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What has happened to the three factories? Has any company purchased any of them? Or are they gone, gone, gone?

If the tie company has closed, it is a shame because it employed many older, immigrant workers. These workers will not be able to secure new work, and they will be forced to retire.

As for the future of Brooks Brothers, I am sorry to say that I do not see much of a future. It will be a shell of its former self. (It already was a shell in decline for decades.) In the worst possible scenario the Brooks name will survive on cheapo clothing made by low end makers on a licensing deal and sold at schlock stores. The best possible scenario is that it becomes primarily an internet company and that it keeps some semblance of quality.

One of the new buyers, Authentic Brands, specializes in buying the name and intellectual property and licensing it to other makers. See https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/08/business/retail-bankruptcy-authentic-brands.html?searchResultPosition=2 . It is primarily in the game to sell licenses to others to exploit the brand name and place it on other, new products.

The other partner in the business , the Simon Property, is in it purely to keep tenants in their malls.

Neither Authentic nor Simon purchased the prior companies with the viewpoint of running the companies.

A telling note is that the main store at 346 Madison has remained shuttered since the pandemic hit. In the meantime, the surrounding merchants, such as Paul Stuart and J. Press, have re-opened.

The Brooks Brothers ties have been a staple for me ever since I graduated. My father used to purchase them on his return trips from NYC.

TBH, if the financial outlook wasn't so grim, they might be able to return to their roots, actually offering high quality tailoring once more, and not diversify their offering ad nauseam. They certainly have the name recognition to be succesful in this regards. But this is presumably wishful thinking on my behalf.
 
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Stylish Dinosaur
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Growing up, I was only interested in Ralph Lauren and not Brooks Brothers. Brooks Brothers seemed fancy, but also, frankly, like rich WASPy clothes, which had no appeal to me. Ralph Lauren, on the other hand, was younger and sexier. It felt much more relevant to my social circles.

I've only ever known A&F as a teeny-bopper brand. I only came across the hunting history much later. I get that was "cooler," in some respects, but it's hard to have nostalgia for something you never lived.

If authenticity means anything, shouldn't it mean being authentic to your actual lived experience? How does one have nostalgia for a hunting store they never even stepped foot in?
I grew up before Ralph launched his brand. My parents dressed us at Brooks Brothers, Bean, and a few local department stores (more common back then). As Brooks had stores in only in a few major cities, that usually meant we visited when we were in New York or Boston (not that often). My mother would sometimes order basics in our latest size via the phone.

I do remember the original Abercrombie as my parents would take us in on those occasions we were in New York. I don't remember buying much there. There was even a revival of the brand prior to the current version. It wasn't much.
 
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Stylish Dinosaur
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Brooks Brothers hadn't been itself for decades. I remember walking into their store a few years back and walking straight out ...
That happened to me at Barney's. I hadn't been in since the 80's or early 90's -- it was shortly after they opened an uptown location -- and remember a Barney's when it was filled with color and carried brands like Huntsman. My spouse and I visited a few years back. When we got outside, he said "Did we just see what we saw?". Given that comment I suppose you could say it wasn't "straight" out ... but I digress. I had never seen a place so void of color. I was reminded of the time we got to LAX only to open our trunk and find our bags missing. We closed the trunk then opened it again as if we expected them to magically appear. No luck. As we walked out of Barney's I recall looking back, but it was still void of color. Frankly it was depressing.
 
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Stylish Dinosaur
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Was just thinking I also remember the "Banana Republic Travel & Safari Clothing Company." There was one on the corner of Bleecker Street and 6th Avenue. I bought shorts and khaki trousers there for a few years. The GAP bought it, changed the name to Banana Republic ... and that was that. Another place ruined.
 

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