A brand like no other
Dale's premium outdoor apparel appealed to Norwegians and tourists alike but was hit hard when Covid shut down travel.
Dale of Norway’s clothes have been designed and knitted in the hamlet of Dale since 1879, when the local Bergsdal river was recognized as an everlasting source of energy and used to power the first Dale factory.
Herman Korsgaard, Director, Altor
”Dale’s amazing quality is in a league of its own. There are Dale clothes from the 1920s that still are functional and wearable today.”
The brand has been built ever since with a relentless focus on innovation and quality. The ongoing connection to successful Norwegian national teams in World Championships and Olympics have helped to build an international reputation.
When Altor partnered with Dale of Norway, the majority of the sales were in Norway. Customers were Norwegians and international tourists wanting to bring a part of Norway with them home. But the tourist market dried up fast when covid shut down international travel in 2020.
“We lost a big part of sales in a short amount of time and had to make decisions fast”, says Herman Korsgaard, Director at Altor, “the most important thing for us was to keep the company running whatever happened. We did not allow any short-term savings, losing competence or experienced workers would set us back for years. It was also important for us to honor the important sponsoring contracts with Norway’s winter sports teams. Our support for them is what has built our reputation, and that needed to keep going”.
Thanks to very hard work from everyone involved, the company did not only survive covid-19, but came out stronger, for instance by expanding through the acquisition of a children’s clothing company.
And now the company is set out to expand globally.
“Apart from tourists looking for a Norwegian memory our customers are fashion forward outdoorsy types. These customers are to be found all over the world. Therefore, we are expanding fast in both Germany and the US.”, Herman Korsgaard continues.
Whilst the strategy has evolved and been sharpened thanks to the Covid-crisis, the recipe going forward is the same as it was when the company started for more than hundred years ago, making the absolute best quality clothes out there. When fast fashion is increasingly questioned, quality clothes that lasts over generations like Dale are here to stay.
Published: Aug 02 2022