The famous British shoe company, Dr. Martens, may be getting closer to finding a new owner, reports indicate. The company placed itself up for sale a little over a year ago. Its shoes have been popular around the world for more than half a century.
Dr. Martens footwear has long been a favorite of celebrities. Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain and former Disney star now pop star Miley Cyrus have been spotted in the company’s trademark lace up leather boots. Known for their comfort and traditional style, the high quality boots are offered at several retailers and outdoor stores.
Just more than a year ago, the company hired Rothschild, an investment bank, to start pitching it to potential buyers. While interested parties seemed attracted to the idea of an auction, talks cooled off before completely ceasing.
Talks between prospective buyers and the shoe manufacturer heated up again recently, and now, Dr. Martens is said to be in serious discussion with one potential new owner in particular. It has not been said if a deal is being struck or if other interested parties remain in the talks. Rothschild is still representing the shoe maker. The potential buyer has not been publicly announced as of yet.
The company, which is closely held, has annual revenue of about $300 million. The company’s history goes back for decades. According to the company website, the shoemaking Griggs family of Britain contacted Munich, Germany’s Dr. Martens after they had seen an ad he put in a trade magazine looking for overseas partners during the 1950s. Then, in the 1960s, the group launched their product, Dr. Martens boots.
Now, more than 50 years later, the company not only continues to sell its boots, but it also sells Mary Janes and other styles of shoes at retailers around the globe, including those such as Urban Outfitters Inc. and Nordstrom Inc.
Apparently, several shoe companies are looking for new owners. Earlier this year, another shoe manufacturer, Aerosoles, started looking for a new owner. Jones Group Inc., which is the owner of shoe brands Stuart Weitzman and Nine West, is currently on the auction block and actively taking bids.