When Marks & Spencer installed elevators in Brooks Brothers’ Madison Avenue flagship, they only went down.

Widely acknowledged for monumental mismanaging Brooks, hastening a decline in quality and the isolation of lifelong customers, the UK apparel firm Marks & Spencer eventually sold Brooks Brothers in 2001 after 13 years and hundreds of millions in losses.

This article, from the July 9, 1990 issue of Forbes, is an interesting view of the beginning of the decline.

Christopher Sharp, who recenly presented M Magazine’s WASP story, provided the document. — CC

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