Many moons ago, the first jeans to be produced outside of the US were made in a small garment factory called L. Hermann in Küzelsau. Today, the same family-run company is called Mustang and is one of Europe´s leading jeans brands.
Since its humble beginnings, the company has not only turned lots of material into pairs of jeans; it has also been the source of lots of material for stories. Stories of incredible bartering and big deals. Stories of the first ever order of 300 pairs of jeans and up to 23, 000 pairs a day.
75 YEARS OF JEAN HISTORY
1932 - A STITCH IN TIME.
When the Hermann family timber business runs into trouble luise founds the L. Hermann clothing factory in Kunzelsau, southern Germany. Determined to succeed, she gets to grips with a needle and thread in no time at all. And on July 2, 1932, she begins to produce work clothes with the help of six seamstresses. Under the guidance of this clever, courageous and confident entepreneur, the company goes from strength to stregth. And by joining forces with Sefranek family, the foundations are laid for a long and succesful future.
1945 - THE BOYS ARE IN TOWN.
Luise`s son Rolf Hermann and son-in-law Albert Sefranek join the company. After the war, fabric is hard to come by, so they improvise and invent. Making use of whatever materials they could get their hands on, they manufacture clothes for almost every walk of life- from traditional dirndls to wirtschaftswunder dungarees.
1948 - SIX BOTTLES OF ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT.
The story of the firstever pair of German Jeans begins with Albert. The bad-boy reputation of blue denims does not prevent him from striking a deal to supply 300 pairs of work pants made from this foreign fabric. To gain authentic template, he trades six bottlese of high-proof home brewed schnapps for six pairs of jeans with an American GI. These `Yankee Pants` catapult Germany into the modern denim age, with a full scale industrial production of the extremely stragihtcut style commencing just a year later.
1953 - NAUGHTY BUT NICE.
The first ever women`s jeans hit the German market, but they are widely regarded as `indecent`. Sefranek devises a cunning plan, so respectable women can wear jeans too: masquerading as `girls` camping pants` this figure-hugging styles sell hot cakes
1958 - COURAGEOUS CONFIDENT AND FREE.
Inspired by the american way of lif, Albert Sefranek create the Mustang Brand. The Name epitomizes the Wild West and conjures up images of James Dean and Marlon Brando. The MUSTANG is a noble creature, embodying America`s spirit of freedom. And so a brand is born. A brand that takes a world by storm.
1968 - LUIS HANDS OVER THE REINS.
Albert and Rolf match the female foundaer for creative flair, bringing inventions great and small to life. As chefs of denim cuisine, they `bake` jeans in specially designed oen to create permanent creases- and products that sell. In the seventies, the company just gets bigger and bette. And for the 1972 Munich Olympics, MUSTANG designs the German team`s casual wear outfits, ensuring the athlets look goof in and out of the arena.
1974 - ALBERT AND HEINER ENJOY SOARING SALES.
The company ceases production of work clothes in 1971, and concentrates exclusively on jeanswear. Thanks to advertising at soccer stadiums and in major consumer magazines, soon everyone recognizes the `jeans with the horse`. Shirts, T-shirts and accesories spice up MUSTANG range. Jeans - the former enfant terrible - are now everybody´s darling. And the company racks up record revenues. Heiner Sefranek joins the MUSTANG group, and the father-and-son team prove a dynamic duo.
1979 - PEOPLE OF TODAY.
Heiner and Albert ensure a rosy future for blue denim with `people of today` - the new MUSTANG campaign endorsed by celebrities such as mountaineer Reinhold Messner and singersongwriter Reinhold Mey. The company enters a phase of expansion.
1981 - BLUE FEVER SPREDS TO SOUTHERN EUROPE.
Manufacturing facilities are established in southern Europe, with new factories in France and Portugal. It is difficult time for the jeans industry, but MUSTANG bucks the trend - poduction doubles and sales climb to new heights. The stonewashed look is in, and MUSTANG gets well acquainted with pumice stones and enzymes. By the late eighties, jeans are back in a big way, in spite of fleeting fashion fads.
1989 - JOINING FORCES WITH JOOP.
MUSTANG acquires the license for JOOP JEANS - high-quality, attention-to-detail designer products. Wolfgang Joop and MUSTANG collaborat closely, and their efforts reap rapid results.
1991 - GO EAST YOUNG MAN.
A powerful advertising campaign helps build the MUSTANG brand´s reputation for quality. At the same time, MUSTANG opens further production plants in eastern Europe and Russia, and founds international subsidiarries to dirve export sales. MUSTANG invests heavily in advertising, changes the way it sells, and the way it sources - combined with classy collections, this has a big and positive impact on revenues.
1993 - OUT OF THE ORDINARY SUCCESS WITH MUSTANG AND W & LT.
From the outset, the business is about more than just threads and rivets for Heiner Sefranek and Belgium designer Walter van Beirendonck. `We produce lifestyles, emotions and communications - as well as clothing, of course. The youth of the ninetis wants to stand out of the crowd, and needs new provocative ideas.` W.& LT. - with its slogan `Kiss the Future` - is more than just a trend, it´s an out-of-the-ordinary fashion label. The collection features T-shirts emitting sound. light and smell - a feast for all the senses.
1995 - THE SWEET SOUND OF DENIM.
Heiner Sefranek teams up with pop music (jam). Like the W & L.T. brand, this lifestyle concept is about far more than just fabric. JAM spans music and lifestyle TV programs, magazines, and MUSTANG stores - home to Germany´s first internet cafés. Albert Sefranek steps down from operational MUSTANG Group management, handing over to Heiner.
1997 - TWENTY-NINE THOUSAND NINE HUNDRED
meters of denim are made into twenty-three thousand pairs of jeans every single day, and sold over the world. The MUSTANG global crew compises around two thousand employees in twenty-four countries.
1999 - ALLWAYS AHEAD OF THE GAME.
The first-ever MUSTANG shoes are produced under license. taking the brand into a nex market. The company attracts an ever younger group, all wanting top-to-toe MUSTANG style.
2000 - WILLY BACKS THE RIGHT HORSE.
Another high-quality, high profile brand is added to the portfolio: MUSTANG signs a license agreement with the Willy Bogner fashion house for Bogner Jeans - and begins designing stylish pants using innovative fabrics. Particular favorites are the patented six-pocket jeans, the water and wind resistant ski pants, the tear-resistant bikker jeans, and the keep-your-cool summer jeans.
2001 - TRUE STYLE NEVER DIES.
The ideal campaign for a brand bursting with self-confidence. With jeans-clad heroes saving fashion victims, baywatch beauties, and supermen from flash in the pan fashion trends.
2003 - BRIGHT IDEAS WITH A BRIGHT FUTURE.
MUSTANG products are sold in 44 countries -. and are more popular than ever. Stores are established in more and more German cities, as well as internationally. And MUSTANG constantly strives to improve the range and presentation of its products. The company has tremendous staying power - just like the man behind the brand. After around 70 years in the clothing industry, MUSTANG is still the number one. Heiner Sefranek is confident that jeans are so versatile, they will survive anything the faddist world of fashion throws at them.
2004 - MUSTANG APPLIES EXPERIENCE.
From its own stores to its work with specialist retailers. MUSTANG does not just deliver clothing, it also delivers expertise and support - for example, on product selection and presentation at shop-in-shop - so retailers can concentrate on what they do best: selling products. The company also establishes stand-alone franchise stores. The lifestyle brand now includes the following license: SHOES, LEATHER, BAGS, BELTS & MORE, BODYWEAR, LEGWEAR, TIME, JEWELRY, SOCKS AND COSMETICS.
2007 - FOLLOWING THE MUSTANG TRAIL.
Mustang, the first company to manufacture jeans in Europe, turns 75. To mark this anniversary, Mustang decides to celebrate its own history, and that of denimwear, in a way which the general public can enjoy and share - in the shapre of a fascinating, multimedia experience. The house once inhabited by the company founder Luise Hermann, in Astrasse 10 in Küzelsau, in converted into the MUSTANG MUSEUM für die Zukunft (Museum for the Future). The official opening ceremony takes place on Sunday, May 6, in conjunction with an open day. The museum
comprises 280 square meters of exhibiton space on two floors, featuring authentic items previously locked away in company archives, and accessible to only MUSTANG MUSEUM.