Friday, March 2, 2012

Door-to-Door is No More

It may be hard to believe, especially for Americans of a “certain age” but Fuller Brush Co., has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The iconic door-to-door cleaning supply company was founded in 1906, 106 years ago! They filed for bankruptcy protection less than two months after saying the company had “completely rebooted itself”.
The Great Bend, Kansas, company listed assets and debt of as much as $50?million each in bankruptcy documents recently filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York. Fuller Brush’s parent company, CPAC Inc., has also sought court protection from creditors.
According to an article on www.dispatch.com, Fuller Brush did not disclose reasons for the bankruptcy. In a rather enigmatic statement, the company said that 2012 would be a “landmark year” as it introduced a new marketing campaign, products and distribution channels. It seems it will, indeed, be a landmark year, just not for the reasons the company had hoped.
Company founder Alfred C. Fuller was born in Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1885 and moved at 18 to Boston, where he sold brushes door-to-door. At aged 21, with a $375 investment, Fuller started making brushes based on feedback from customers and hired crews to help with sales nationwide.
Fuller Brush expanded to a $109 million business by 1960. Its factory near Great Bend manufactured over 2,000 products.
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