04/07/2022 - 14:58

Inflation, production costs put the boot in

04/07/2022 - 14:58

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Forrest-owned bootmaker R.M. Williams has enforced price increases across its range of lavish products as it grapples with rising materials costs and inflationary pressures.

Inflation, production costs put the boot in
R.M. Williams told customers the increase would come into effect from today. Photo: Jesinta Burton

Andrew Forrest-owned Australian bootmaker R.M. Williams has enforced price increases across its range of lavish products as it grapples with rising materials costs and inflationary pressures.

In a statement released this morning, the Adelaide-headquartered company told customers the increase would come into effect from today and likely affect its boots, apparel, leather goods and accessories.

In it, the bootmaker claimed the increase was critical to ensuring the company continued to deliver high quality products and support the operation of its stores, production partners and raw materials sources.

“This price increase is a result of the rising cost of raw materials such as leather, the cost of our manufacturing, most of which takes place on Australian shores, exchange rate pressures and the rate of inflation,” the statement said.

“We have made every effort to shoulder the majority of this burden before making this decision.”

The increase is believed to start at $50 per pair of boots, with the price of a pair of R.M. Williams' signature boots starting at $595.

Like any business, R.M Williams chief executive Paul Grosmann said the company periodically reviewed its pricing and adjusted for exchange-rate pressures, inflation, raw materials and manufacturing costs when and if necessary.

He told Business News R.M Williams aimed to keep prices fair and accessible, knowing the boots were not just a purchase, they were an investment.

"Every pair of boots is crafted by hand in our Adelaide workshop, just as they always have been, and always will be," he said.

"This process sees each boot travel through over 80 pairs of hands and artisanal processes, resulting in a product that’s hardwearing and built to stand the test of time, gaining character and personal value with each step, crease and scuff.”

Business News understands prices have increased slightly over the past five years.

The Forrest’s family investment firm Tattarang acquired the 90-year-old bootmaking company for $190 million back in 2020.

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