Samsonite was founded by Jesse Shwayder in 1910 in Denver, Colorado, and began business as a trunk manufacturing company. Over our history, we have remained true to our core values of strength, durability and innovation, developing and widely commercializing numerous innovations in luggage, establishing key industry trends and adapting to evolving consumer needs.
We are principally engaged in the design, manufacture, sourcing and distribution of luggage, business and computer bags, outdoor and casual bags and travel accessories throughout the world, primarily under the Samsonite® , Tumi®, American Tourister®, Gregory®, High Sierra®, Kamiliant®, ebags®, Lipault® and Hartmann® brand names as well as other owned and licensed brand names.
Before 2012, the Group’s business was primarily centered on the Samsonite brand, focused largely on travel luggage, and distributed principally through the wholesale channel. Over the last several years, the Group has strategically diversified its business in order to reduce its reliance on any single brand, market, channel of distribution or product category, and in line with the goal of not just building a bigger business, but a stronger one as well. Today, the Group has a more balanced business, built around a portfolio of diverse yet complementary brands and offering its customers a competitive mix of products sold through multiple distribution channels.
Our products are sold in North America, Asia, Europe and Latin America through a variety of wholesale distribution channels, including department and specialty retail stores, mass merchants, warehouse clubs and e-retailers; our company-operated retail stores as well as through e-commerce.
The Shwayder Brothers, the company’s original founders, manufacture robust wooden trunks.
The Samsonite brand first appeared on the Streamlite suitcase, an innovative luggage line made by covering wooden frame with vulcanized fibre. The name “Samsonite” was chosen to stress the brand’s core values of strength and durability by taking its name from the Biblical character Samson, renowned for his strength.
Our core brand, Samsonite, is one of the most well-known travel luggage brands in the world and has been central to the growth and success of our business since it was first introduced in 1941.
The jet age brought about the launch of Samsonite’s innovative lightweight luggage. For the first time, wooden box construction gave way to a shift toward lighter materials, initially magnesium and ABS.
The Samsonite Swirl logo was introduced, its four leaves standing for design, development, market research and publicity and also highlighting Samsonite’s then presence on four continents.
The first Samsonite suitcase on wheels was introduced as part of the Silhouette product line, representing a revolution in comfort and convenience for travelers.
Samsonite launched the award-winning Oyster, a hardside suitcase with an injection-molded plastic frame rather than a metal frame, making it Samsonite’s lightest case yet.
We acquired American Tourister, Inc., based in Providence, Rhode Island. This enabled us to market products under two of the most well-known and respected brands in the luggage market.
Samsonite introduced presented the Ultra Transporter—the first upright case with a balanced four-wheel system that allowed the traveler to push or pull their luggage.
The first Samsonite aluminium product, Xylem™.
Four-wheel Samsonite Spinners were introduced, improving mobility and convenience for travelers.
The first suitcase with a multi-point lock system.
Cosmolite: made of the innovative Curv® material. Resulting in the strongest and lightest Samsonite suitcase ever.
In June 2011, Samsonite completed its initial public offering, listing its shares on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (stock code: 1910.HK).
Acquired the High Sierra and Hartmann brands. High Sierra's products are targeted at active lifestyle consumers including outdoor enthusiasts, skiers and snowboarders, adventure travelers and students. The Hartmann brand, founded in 1877, is recognized as a mark of quality among American luxury consumers and its products appeals to business and leisure consumers alike.
Acquired three brands: Lipault, a French luggage brand known for its functional and fashionable products, aimed at women; Speck, a U.S. company which designs and distributes slim protective cases for personal electronic devices; and Gregory, a leading provider of premium technical backpacking, mountaineering, and trail running products and accessories. Founded in 1977, Gregory is a pioneer in its field, well-known for setting performance standards in terms of the innovative design, ergonomics, high quality and durability of its products. The Speck brand was divested in 2021.
Acquired Tumi a leading global premium lifestyle brand offering a comprehensive line of business bags, travel luggage and accessories. Founded in 1975, Tumi is well known for the high quality, durability, functionality and innovative design of its products, which range from its iconic black ballistic business cases and travel luggage synonymous with the modern business professional, to travel accessories, women’s bags and outdoor apparel.
We acquired ebags, the market leading e-commerce platform for luggage and backpacks in the U.S.
Launched Recyclex™, our innovative fabric made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles.
Samsonite marked its 110th anniversary with the launch of “Our Responsible Journey”, our new global sustainable strategy to become the most sustainable lifestyle bag and travel luggage company in the world. As well as continuing to design products that last, we are also committed to the increasing use of recycled materials; reducing our impact on the planet; and protecting and enriching our people, partners and the communities that help make our business such a great success.
Launched the Samsonite PROXIS™ hard-shell suitcase collection. This is the first travel collection utilizing Roxkin™ – an innovative, patented luggage material that is remarkably strong and light, and is also recyclable.
Always devoted to inspiring travelers with the best innovations and committed to a sustainable future, Samsonite will keep on walking “Our Responsible Journey”.