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Hugo Boss

Hugo Boss, also known as just Boss, is a German fashion brand founded in 1924 in Metzingen, Germany. It is named after its creator – Hugo Boss. He was born and died in Metzingen and the headquarters of the fashion house is still based there. Initially, Hugo Boss produced general-purpose clothing. The founder was loyal to the Nazi German ideology and in 1930, with the rise of the Nazi Party, the brand started making Nazi uniforms. Later on, they began supplying other organizations with uniforms too such as the National Socialism Party. After World War II, Hugo Boss started making men’s suits. Since then, the company has evolved into a major world-known fashion brand with its own women’s and children’s clothing collections. They have been also making perfumes since 1985.

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The founder Hugo Boss

Hugo Ferdinand Boss was born in 1885. His parents owned a lingerie shop in Metzingen which he took over in 1908. His experience in the family business, as well as his apprenticeship as a merchant, helped him become the successful entrepreneur behind this global brand today.

In 1923 he founded his own clothing company which he turned into a factory a year later. At that point in time, the luxury fashion brand we now know produced simple clothing such as shirts, jackets, raincoats, and sportswear. This was a hard time for the German economy though and Boss went into bankruptcy. He didn’t give up on his business and managed to reach an agreement with his creditors. In 1931 he had to start everything from the beginning owning only 6 sewing machines. They were all the creditors left him with.

In the same year Hugo Boss joined the Nazi Party and that was when the company started producing uniforms. Thanks to the high demand for uniforms needed, his sales got higher than ever and his business started flourishing.

Hugo Boss’ Nazi Party membership and his National Socialism Party business relations couldn’t go hand in hand though. This was why in 1946 Hugo Boss had to face the court. He was convicted of being an activist and supporter of National Socialism. Not only he had to pay a huge penalty, but he was stripped of his voting rights and he was forbidden to run his own business. Two years later he died.

Hugo Boss brand after the death of Hugo Boss

The brand didn’t die when its founder did. After Hugo Boss’s death, his son-in-law Eugen Holy took over the business. The main production of the company after World War II was of work uniforms. However, 1950 was a significant year for Hugo Boss. That was when they received their first order for men’s suits. The amount of work and higher sales led to the expansion of the company’s employees. The factory was clearly doing great. For the next 10 years, they were mostly selling men’s suits. Eugen Holy retired in 1969 and his two sons took over the company. They were also hard-working and ambitious. Their goal was to start selling their clothing internationally which soon came to a realization.

By the end of the 70s, Hugo Boss was already a registered trademark and they started working with other companies too. They started sponsoring the famous German racing driver Jochen Mass, Formula One driver Niki Lauda and the McLaren Racing team. Currently, they sponsor different golf, tennis, soccer, sailing and motorsports athletes and teams.