Falke HosieryFor many people all over the world, Falke is synonymous with quality hosiery and socks as well as sportswear and there’s a good reason behind that fact: the company is one that boasts a history few pantyhose/hosiery producers do. The company was founded in 1895, by Franz Falke-Rohen, a roofer who began working as a knitter, during the winter months which made work impossible for construction workers in general.
In 1902, Franz jun. took over the company. Franz jun. was an umbrella-maker. He’s the one credited with tiding the company through the First World War. In 1918, the company purchased a spinning mill in Schmallenberg, which turned out to be an important move in the evolution of the Falke Group.
1920 saw the establishment of what would become the company headquarters to this day. The first telephone connection was also installed and new knitting machines were purchased. In 1928, the company was already a successful operation, employing about 800 people. This is the year when the company founder, Franz Falke Senior died. In 1939, the Falke Group acquired the Salomon Knitwear Company, further expanding its operations.
In 1946, fresh in the wake of the Second World War, the Falke brand and logo are established. The logo is trademarked in 1950. 1951 marked another turning point in the history of the brand. The company was taken over by Franz-Otto and Paul Falke, after the death of their father, Franz Falke Jr. The operations are expanded yet again, and for the first time in the history of the company, export becomes a strategic objective. Falke production units are set up all over Europe.
From our point of view, 1958 was the most important date in the history of Falke. That was the year when the company first began manufacturing nylon stockings in addition to the knit socks, a move made possible by the purchase of the Uhli hosiery factory. This way, Falke became the first manufacturer of women’s nylon hosiery/pantyhose in Germany.
During the 60s and 70s, the brand went through several stages of evolution, at the end of which the women’s line was dropped in favor of men’s clothing.
In 1974, several international production facilities were set up, in Hungary, Portugal, South Africa and Austria.
Several awards are collected during the 70s for marketing excellence. During the 3 decades that would follow, Falke secured a number of high-profile licensing deals with partners that included fashion designers like Christian Dior, Lagerfeld and Armani, as well as with famous brands like Camel, JOOP!, Moschino and Boss.
Paul Falke senior passes away in 1990, handing the reins of the company to his son, Paul Jr. and Franz-Peter Falke. In 1997, the Falke Group takes over the Leinefelde Textile Works GmbH, a major German yarns manufacturer.
During 1997 and 1998, Falke act as a major sponsor for the Williams Renault Formula 1 team, which then included Heinz-Harald Frentzen and Jacques Villeneuve.
In 1999, following a merger, Falke KG is born to operate as a clothing company. In 2005, Falke is already an accomplished manufacturer of high quality sportswear. The company purchases the rights to the Burlington trademark in 2008, and with it the possibility to distribute clothing, jewelry and well as leather goods in some of the most important international markets.
For more information on Falke hosiery and the Falke brand, check out www.falke.com.
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