Arthur W. Welch
In 1931 Arthur W. Welch began manufacturing leather finishes in Milwaukee, WI for a burgeoning tanning industry that required technically strong domestic suppliers. Bucking the headwinds of The Great Depression, PLF expanded in to the manufacture of shoe finishes and private label retail products including shoe creams, leather protectors and leather softeners.
Arthur W. Welch suffered a sudden heart attack while hunting ducks in 1946. His brother Frank ran the company until 1955, when son Robert, who had just completed a football scholarship at Notre Dame, took over the reins.
Bob Welch was one of the giants in the industry. He started the Shoe Finish division and expanded geographical areas of business into Europe, China, India, Turkey and numerous other countries. With an eye toward diversity, he also bought Louco Paint company which was later renamed Prime Coatings.
Bob Welch passed away in 2004 and was succeeded by son Terence Welch, who had been working at Prime Leather Finishes in R&D since 1981.
Through our 80 years of history, we have achieved a reputation for innovation, quality and expertise in the design and manufacture of chemical coatings for leather and all sectors of leather products. With the third generation now solidly in place Prime Leather Finishes continues to grow as a privately held family business leaving in our path: A Legacy of Achievement…
Our company also has a Commitment to the Future: By using the latest technology to modify existing lines and routinely developing entirely new systems, PLF researchers are constantly working to ensure that our customers have the best and latest coatings technology in the world.
Excerpt written by Mary Porter, daughter of Arthur Welch