The YDS Boots brand is growing in recognition in Europe and across the world. Our Turkish factory is one of the largest technical footwear manufacturing centres in the World, and we produce more police and military boots than any other manufacturer in Europe.
The YDS story began in 1927 when Mr Yakupoglu started to trade leather and raw materials in a small town in Turkey, (YDS stands for Yakupoglu Leather Industry in Turkish and the abbreviation has stuck). This soon developed and moved to the industrial centre of Ankara. In 1971 a footwear business was launched making boots for the Turkish Police. The production of military boots became a speciality and over the decades militaries all around the world were wearing YDS military boots to kit out their forces. The development of injection soling technology and in particular the specialty of in-house blended Dual Density Rubber (DDR) has made reliability a major strength for the business. For industries like construction, utilities, engineering, foundries, and the power sector, YDS have developed incredibly reliable footwear solutions for the constant grind on highly abrasive terrain. Injected DDR sole technology perfected by YDS is applied across many sectors to protect wearers in the most hazardous working environments including fire fighting and police public order.
The production of military boots was an excellent base for what was to come as YDS looked to spread its wings into more extensive exporting. An opportunity for buying a well renowned safety footwear business in the UK, Goliath Footwear, came up and YDS took the chance in 2003. The Goliath Footwear brand was established in 1880 and was clearly well established in UK industries. The mix of military boot manufacturing expertise and the Goliath safety footwear brand brought the drive to create more specialist safety footwear lines and within the last 5 years have developed technical footwear for specialist industrial applications, and for the emergency services.
Steve Hall, Sales and Marketing Director YDS says ‘The progress we have made in the technical footwear market has been phenomenal. We are producing effective and reliable footwear across utilities, construction and the power markets where the requirement is so specific. Integrated with technology brands such as GORE-TEX®, CROSSTECH® and VIBRAM we’re producing footwear that protects and performs to the highest level and exporting all around the world.’
YDS have gained an excellent manufacturing capability producing over 10,000 pairs of quality safety and tactical footwear a day. This skill and capability was not lost on the world’s leading technology brands who now partner with YDS to produce technical footwear with better protection and comfort. The main player is WL GORE who has licenced YDS to produce footwear with a GORE-TEX® fabric and installed quality test machinery within the production process. In fact 2% of the daily production of YDS and Goliath GORE-TEX® footwear is tested to ensure the waterproof and breathable properties of the membrane in conjunction with the footwear remains high quality and long lasting. Other technology brands include Vibram®, D3O®, CORDURA®.
Across 40 countries worldwide YDS has become a specialist in technical safety footwear that has proved invaluable to many industries. The mix of high output, manufacturing skill and technology has given YDS the edge over recent years.