The Aero Leathers Saga

Grand Potentate

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Did anyone know about this crazy shit? I just found out about it tonight and have been obsessed with it for the past hour. This is a fucking crazy story

Former Aero Leather Clothing boss guilty of theft - The Scotsman

This Fedora Lounge thread has the full rundown. Aero Trial Narrative.

The TL:DR version:

Basically.... owner of Aero hired a kid in the 1980s to work for him as a leather cutter. Twenty years later owner of Aero retired and left that kid, now a seasoned Aero vet, in charge of the company and the dude basically fucked him by (I think... correct me if I"m wrong) a) stealing all of his patterns, attempting to steal his workers, and starting Alexander Leathers, and b) selling Aero Leathers on Ebay for cheaper than they otherwise retail and thus ruining their market.

He basically conned the factory into producing jackets and other items without record, and sending jackets to Iron Heart in exchange for jeans.



Then he took all that product and sold it for a fraction of the price on ebay.



Then after making 200k he went to Alexander Leathers and brought the patterns with him, and got an intern to make even more jackets for him to sell.



One of the con-men in on it with him went to Alexander too.



The owner of Aero, who was already retired and survived a recent heart attack, was forced to return to work once again.



The woman who gave permission to the con man for all the financial hijinks (She opened the con man a line of credit because she "felt sorry for him" LOL) jumped ship as well.


Literally everyone the owner of Aero trusted with his company stole from him and shit in his face.

QuickNotes taken from the SF TOJ Drew Keith Internet Celebrity Stalker thread.
 
I guess this nixes the admin apprenticeship I was hoping to get from Rambo.

I'm not sure how undercutting your own retailers is of benefit unless you really find the hassle of vending and accepting returns from fickle igents to be worth the markup. Just jack up the damn prices if you have a distinguished good. There's certainly precedent.
 
I'm not sure how undercutting your own retailers is of benefit unless you really find the hassle of vending and accepting returns from fickle igents to be worth the markup.

I think that he did it because he wanted to run Aero Leathers into the ground, steal their intellectual property (ie their patterns) and then head up the company that he'd started, having the security of knowing that he had deliberately ruined his main competitor (ie his former employer).

Of course, he could probably just have arranged to buy the Aero Leathers company from the owner who, it seems, pretty much regarded him as a son but clearly that would have been too easy and he wanted to take the more challenging path (more challenging in both a legal/ethical and business sense).
 
mmh - more likely explanation is that he knows fuck all about business - everything points to that - but does know about making leather jackets - and he was looking for quick and easy cash for himself.

The ToJ sounds more like your standard Ponzi scheme - where the principal is the Bernie Madoff of young asian guys clothes tastes etc. Ponzi schemes work best when the initial scamster believes or even half believes in the idea themselves.
 
I'm also missing something about the magic of patterns in the leather world. Can't anyone worth their salt just buy a bunch of the original product and easily reverse-engineer it to make perfect knock-offs?
I haven't read the full story but this does seem like someone that's too clever by half scheming away and ruining a perfectly good operation they had set up for himself.
 

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