U.S. Shoemaker Allen Edmonds Regains Its Footing

After self-inflicted wounds, Allen Edmonds’s private equity owner preps for a sale
Photograph by Philip Scott Andrews for Bloomberg Businessweek

Since it was founded in 1922, shoemaker Allen Edmonds has endured the Great Depression, World War II, and offshore competition. Along the way, its handmade men’s dress shoes became mainstays in the boardrooms of many American companies. U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and both Bushes wore the Park Avenue, a longtime bestseller, to their inaugurations. It took an Italian love affair, a leveraged buyout, and the Great Recession to trip up the iconic American brand.

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