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The ‘Cut Out The Middlemen’ Trend: How It All Started

Originally reported on Bloomberg, Ariel Nelson and Lane Gerson were trying to sort out their wardrobe because they have a wedding to attend when they realized that there is a gaping hole between the $350 monk straps at Allen Edmonds and $100 pair of oxfords at Aldo. They then decided to start Jack Erwin with a simple premise. However, it turns out that shoe business is more complicated. The process of making a dress shoe requires around 100 separated processes, and it can take weeks of trials to make it perfect.

Middlemen to Cut

Fortunately, they met Bertrand Guillaume who declared that he is tired of dealing with agents and distributors on and six months later, Guillaume was overseeing Jack Erwin’s factory and suppliers. And then, things started to run smoothly. Nelson and Gerson identify their supply chain and found more middlemen to cut. The more they do it, the more the quality of the products improved and business is getting better. Jack Erwin’s profile rose and similar companies such as Paul Evans and Awl & Sundry began to emerge

Paul Evans

Paul Evans is one of the industries that apply the no middleman markups. They worked with different individuals and factories at the beginning of their journey, and in the end, they ended up in a factory in Naples, Italy.

With no middleman, Paul Evans offers high-quality shoes with great prices as there is no middleman that can jack up the price to get more profit. Their lineup is small, and it was based on the founders’ shoe preference. Moreover, they offer unique colors like Oxblood that can’t be found anywhere. The shoes made are guaranteed to be comfortable too.


They started the no middlemen trend, and the trend is proved to be a great way to sell shoes after all. Nelson stated that they want to be able to earn $100 million a year after five years. Jack Erwin currently has 23 full-time employees, and they keep improving day by day.

  1. Michel Whyte says:

    As an addition, around 40 percent of the customers return what they buy at that time. As the largest of the shoe startups, Jack Erwin is very successful now. It is also a very nice thing for them to write term paper and make good use of it all the time too.