America's oldest maker of tailor-made clothing has a new owner and a new lease on life with the acquistion of the 134-year-old company this week by Cleveland, Tenn., businessman Allan Jones.
In a statement today, Jones said his $1.9 million purchase of the bankrupt suit maker represents only the start of his investment and turnaround plans at Hardwick Clothes, which he said should be aided by a growing consumer desire for American-made goods. Hardwick Clothes is one of the few domestic makers of designer suites in the United States.
"I am convinced the pendulum is swinging back to 'Made in America,' after the Men's Wearhouse acquisition of Joseph Abboud - one of America's traditional suitmakers," said Jones, founder and CEO of the payday lending business, Check Into Cash.
Jones noted that at one time, Hardwick was renowned for having the best blazer in the world. He said he intends to help the blazer regain its prominence by using better materials and buttons.
Thomas H. Hopper, the chairman and president of Hardwick Clothes, said he would remain with the company as Jones takes the reins.
"Allan Jones brings real enthusiasm and excitement, and it's just what Hardwick needed," Hopper said in a statement today. "We can now move forward as an even stronger company and regain our national prominence. Our employees are excited about the future."
Founded in 1880 by C.L Hardwick, Hardwick Clothes is Cleveland's oldest manufacturer, but filed for bankruptcy in December because it was unable to make a required payment to the U.S. Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp.
Read more in Friday's Times Free Press.
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