C. & J. Clark International Ltd, trading as Clarks, is a British shoe manufacturer and retailer with international operations. The company was founded by Quaker brothers Cyrus and James Clark in 1825, in Somerset, England. The company has over 1,000 stores and franchises around the world. The company’s headquarters are based in Street, Somerset, England at the original place where the business was launched.
The business started when Cyrus Clark started a partnership with a Quaker cousin in the trade of wool stapling, fellmonger and tanning in Street, Somerset in 1821. However, four years later in 1825, the partnership dissolved and Cyrus moved to a site on High Street in Street with the idea of making rugs from sheepskins instead of pulling off the wool. The location he chose at this time is the site on which the business headquarters still stands. As the firm grew Cyrus appointed his younger brother James as an apprentice. While serving as an apprentice, James began using the offcuts from the rugs to produce slippers known as Brown Petersburg. These slippers were made by out workers who collected this material and made the footwear in workshops at home. The slipper business quickly grew which provided James an equal share in the partnership which put an end to his apprenticeship. As from 1933, the company was traded as C. & J. Clark.
One of the company’s successful product is the Desert Boot, an ankle high boot made from calf suede leather and designed and launched by Nathan Clark (great-grandson of James Clark) in 1950. Clarks offers a variety of high-quality products for women, men, boys, girls and babies. Some of the products available at Clarks’ stores are; sandals, shoes, flats, court shoes, casuals, Desert boots, fashion shoes, pumps, school shoes, bags, purses, wallets, umbrellas, clutch bags, backpacks, leather bags and much more.