The name van Laack is known throughout Germany as a producer of bespoke business apparel and fashion, but the venerable firm has found a lucrative and rather more populist market during the corona virus pandemic: face masks.
The company has sold more than 100 million of its masks in Germany since the pandemic hit the country in the spring.
“In terms of pure statistics, we delivered a mask to every single citizen in Germany,” van Laack Managing Director Christian von Daniels told business newspaper Handelsblatt.
The masks are more expensive than other face coverings on the market but still cheap enough to be sold in supermarket and drugstore chains. Part of their appeal is a whiff of elegance they bring to an item frequently associated with inconvenience and discomfort. The company also offers a free mask made of the same material to customers who order tailored shirts.
Van Laack says traffic on its website has increased by 500 to 600 percent since it has been offering masks. Experts believe the demand for high-end masks will continue well into 2021 and perhaps beyond in the business world and elsewhere.
“The mask is the new tie,” quipped business expert Gerrit Heinemann from Niederrhein University to Handelsblatt.