Hickey Freeman suits to no longer be manufactured in Rochester

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. Hickey Freeman Tailored Clothing was founded in Rochester back in 1899, but after 124 years the iconic company’s suits will no longer be made here.

The Hickey Freeman line was licensed to the company. That license now no longer exists after financial negotiations broke down.

“We didn’t want to stop producing Hickey Freeman, but we couldn’t do it in a way that was unaffordable,” said CEO Stephen Granovski.

After more than a century in business, Hickey Freeman is losing one of its well-loved lines of manufactured name-brand clothing.

“The company is staying put,” said Granovski. “The factory is staying put. The operation and the workers remain in place. We will no longer produce the Hickey Freeman brand as of the end of the month.”

Granovski says the Hickey Freeman line is a licensed brand owned by the Authentic Brand Group. That company decided to no longer work with Hickey Freeman and will now work with another company that will produce a cheaper suit in Mexico.

“The payments that they were expecting, which were much higher than reasonable, and so we couldn’t arrive at an agreement that made sense. They rejected our offer and as a result, we no longer have rights,” said Granovski.

Dressed in one of his many Hickey Freeman suits, Rochester Mayor Malik Evans is happy that the jobs of over 200 employees will remain in the city. The company will continue producing suits for other companies.

“Brooks Brothers suits are going to be made at the factory, so we’ll have the great opportunity to still wear suits that are going to be made in Rochester,” said Evans.

Granovski says new changes are set to go into effect in a couple of weeks. On May 29, the company will be renamed Rochester Tailored Clothing. It will still operate out of the facility on North Clinton Avenue, but there’s more.

“We’re going to have the grand opening of our store called Hickey Freeman for four days, and it will be the last four days that customers will be able to purchase Hickey Freeman high-quality clothing made in Rochester, and it will be at prices they’ve never seen before,” said Granovski.

Hickey Freeman is opening a factory store at the corner of Union and Broad streets in downtown Rochester.