However fashion trends are determined, it looks like the Blundstone Boots aren't going anywhere soon. The 150-plus-year-old brand founded in Tasmania, Australia, has fans worldwide of its long-lasting boots. Who owns Blundstone Boots, the boots that could be remembered for their mark on the early 2020s?
Blundstone Boots have caught the eye of a wide range of customers and the Worth Global Style Network (WGSN), which called Blundstone a brand to watch in 2021, The New York Times reports.
What is the history of Blundstone Boots? How did the company begin?
The Blundstone Boots story starts in the mid-1800s. According to the company website, the Blundstone family traveled by boat for 93 days from England to Hobart, in Tasmania, Australia. They founded John Blundstone and Sons in 1970 and began building their reputation for making quality work boots.
In 1994, the company presented its boots at the International Exhibition in Hobart, where their product was called "exceptional," "exceedingly well made," and "second to none."
Who is the Blundstone Boots CEO today?
The company's longtime CEO was Steve Gunn. He held the role of Chief Executive Officer from 1994 until October 2020. He is still the company Chairman, while Adam Blake serves as the Joint Chief Executive Officer.
Gunn gave an interview with Footwear Plus in 2019, in which he touted the company's quality product as key to its success. He said that word of mouth from satisfied customers leads to more people buying their boots. “We want people to want the brand for all the right reasons in terms of comfort, durability and looking great.”
Is Blundstone Boots privately owned?
Yes, Blundstone Boots is fully privately owned, and remains a family company. The company says that it supplies its leather from Vietnam, India, China, Mexico, and Thailand and works to ensure ethical treatment of workers. This includes "no forced or child labor, harassment, abuse, or discrimination."
Only the company's gumboots are manufactured in Australia, while all of its leather products are manufactured in other countries.
Where can you find Blundstone Boots?
This Australian company has an impressive global reach. According to The New York Times, about 20 percent of Blundstone's total sales last year came from the U.S. Joint CEO Adam Blake also said that just five years ago, the total sales of Blundstone Boots in the U.S. were only 5 percent of the company's total revenues.
Blundstone Boots are available for purchase through the company's online store, of course. Customers can also find the beloved boots at Nordstrom, REI, and Madewell. There are also seasonal physical stores in Manhattan.
Chairman Gunn said in 2019 that the company was likely only operating at about 20 percent of its potential, but he also wanted to choose retailers carefully. “We see heaps and heaps of opportunity in this market without ever being in discount stores or some major department stores that we don’t see as right for the brand.”
How much is Blunstone Boots worth?
The Blundstone Boots brand, being privately owned, is not sharing specific details about its value. However, in 2019, then-CEO said that it had been a "record year." Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic likely caused some issues with profitability, but it seems the company is doing better than ever.
According to customers interviewed by NYT, the boots are very comfortable even when standing or working for long periods. Jenn Stimple, wardrobe stylist for TV and film, said, "They're just really easy to pull and take off at home after a long day."
It also doesn't hurt that many celebrities seem to like Blundstone boots. Although Blundstone doesn't have celebrities endorse the brand, many stars have been seen wearing the boots. According to Forbes, celebrities who have been spotted wearing Blundstone boots include David Beckham, Ellen Page, Cuba Gooding Jr., Paul Rudd, and J.J. Abrams. Kate Middleton has even been photographed wearing the boots.
The Times suggests that the Blundstone Chelsea boot "may be what fashion historians point to as the boot of the early 2020s." Customers who value longevity and quality may not mind the approximately $200 price tag.