Hugo Boss founded a clothing factory in Metzingen, Germany, in 1923, only a few years after the end of World War I, while most of the county was in a state of economic ruin. Initially workers’ clothes were made. In 1953, after 30 years, the first men’s suits were made. Boss became known for high-end men’s suits and enjoyed popularity in the 1980′s when stars like Don Johnson and Jan-Michael Philip wore their suits. Before and during WW II, Mr. Boss’ company both designed and manufactured uniforms and attire for the troops, officers and other governmental branches of Nazi Germany, including the SS. It is likely that the factory used forced labour. After the war, Hugo Boss was labelled an “opportunist of the Third Reich” and fined 80.000 marks. The company then languished in relative obscurity until the fifties. Hugo Boss himself died in 1948.
Today, Hugo Boss AG is a fashion house based in Germany, which specializes in menswear. The company went public in 1985 and is now part of the Marzotto Group, the Italian material manufacturer under a new fashion company Valentino Fashion Group with 50.9% held in the Boss Group.
Todays brands for men include: Boss Black, Boss Green, Boss Orange, Hugo and separately Baldessarini. For women: Boss Black, Boss Orange and Hugo. Also parts of the brand are Lifestyle Accessories.
In 1999 Boss Orange for men was launched described as sporty and casual separating itself from the trendy Hugo brand and the sophisticated Boss Black brand.
Boss Green is a completely sporty brand selling items designed for sport or a sporty look.
The womens- and menswear collections in the BOSS Black line offer versatile fashion ranges with a rich array of elegant “modern classics” in business, leisure and formalwear: perfect looks that satisfy the most demanding tastes and accentuate the wearer’s personality.
Positioned in the upper market segment, the luxurious BOSS Selection menswear line represents the premium world in the BOSS brand universe. The interplay of sophisticated design, exclusive materials and beautiful tailoring guarantees clothing of the highest standard for customers of distinction.
HUGO delivers unconventional looks for men and women: clothes that are progressive yet never overstated. The collections feature architectonic lines and new takes on classic shapes. By offering trendsetting design and superior quality, HUGO satisfies the high expectations of´its fashion-conscious customers.
In 2000, Werner Baldessarini, the Chairman of the company, brought out a womenswear line which has been very successful.
The company’s products, divided over three brands, are available throughout the world in 102 countries and more than 5,000 retail stores. These brands are Boss, Hugo, and since 2004, Baldessarini.
The latter, Baldessarini GmbH, is a more independent business unit which focuses more on a prestigious image than its two sister brands. It sells, like the other Hugo Boss brands, clothing, shoes, fragrances and accessories.
All fragrance brands (Hugo, Hugo Boss and Baldessarini) are owned by Procter & Gamble.