<== Williams and Sonoma ==>
Williams-Sonoma Corporation offers a variety of upscale brands with items for the home and kitchen. Subsidiaries include Pottery Barn, West Elm and Rejunvenation.
Williams-Sonona was founded in 1954 by Charles E. Williams. Chuck repaired fighter planes in East Africa and India during WWII. He worked as a home builder after the war in Sonoma. In 1953, Mr Williams visited France and realized there would be a market for French culinary products in the United States.
Chuck Williams opened his first in Sonoma Califiornia in 1954 and relocated to San Francisco in 1971. The shop began producing a catalog in 1971.
W. Howard Lester (1935-2010), an Oklahoma businessman who had made money in the software industry, bought Williams-Sonoma in 1978 for $100,000 and assumption of $700,000 in debt. Lester Expanded the store and took it public in 1983 with the symbol WSM. WSM acquired Pottery Barn from The Gap in 1986.
The company launched the West Elm brand of furniture stores in 2003 and acquired Rejuvenation in 2011. The company opened a store in Sonoma County in 2012.
Rejuvenation was founded in 1977 by Jim Kelly of Portland. Mr. Kelly was interested in architectural restoration and began salvaging and restoring vintage lighting. As the demand for vintage products grew, Rejuvenation began manufacturing and selling through showcase stores and mail order. Rejuvenation was acquired by Williams-Sonoma in November 2011.
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