Founded in 2005 by David Schottenstien, aged just 21, Astor & Black has become synonymous with style and quality when it comes to bespoke suits for men. They have also started selling custom clothing for women.
The company has seen it's clothing worn by a number of elite athletes, celebrities and business professionals. A number of famous people can be seen wearing A&B tailored clothing on their blog. Their site also has a number of testimonials from Forbes wealthiest individuals including Larry Ellison founder of Oracle and a number of sport stars.
David made sure that customer service was one of the most important aspects of the company, offering unparalleled levels of service by coming to your home or office to fit your suit. You can custom design your clothes from the buttons to the stitching, from the cloth to the lining.
Davids idea behind A&B is to democratize the world of bespoke suits by making it more widely available and also more affordable. Well more affordable in comparison to a similar service. They have a much smaller margin in order to charge customer less with the focus of attracting a larger audience and making up for the smaller margin by attracting large volumes of customers.
The organisation works with a number of filed sales agents who fulfill orders received at the companies shops.
David himself is a big fan of the three piece suit. "Watch the movies The Aviator, Seabiscuit, or Public Enemies and tell me those people don't look incredible," he adds. Back in 2009 Mr Schottenstein was named Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award for South Central Ohio & Kentucky.
David previously started a cigar business which did well for a couple of years before his father found out, forcing him to shut it down. But that didn't stop him, he then started trading stocks online, again on the sly and again his father found out. But it was to be 3rd time lucky as when he found his love for fashion, while at a Jewish boarding school in Venice, he created A&B a company that his dad could be proud of.
He puts his success down to the hard work and determination of his team and unmatched levels of customer service. This as well as the fact the company offers great stylish and affordable suits. Having a great product makes it easier to sell.
And sell they have, A&B's revenues in it's first year reached $1million while 2009 revenues reached $11.3million and 2010 saw the business gross over $20 million.
The young entrepreneur is still a few years shy of 30 and is the owner of a very successful company that has potential to be huge.
Schottenstein believes the biggest obstacle faced by young entrepreneurs is themselves. “People have great ideas all the time but find all the reasons not to do it,” says Schottenstein. “You have to be fearless and do not internalize rejection.”
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