Many in the San Francisco area will recognize the name of the famous retailer, Gump’s. The company was founded in 1861 by Solomon Gump. Over the years, Gump’s became endeared to San Francisco residents for their beautiful and unique gifts. Solomon Gump started the retail enterprise as a frame and mirror shop. The selection grew as luxury goods from Asia were added to the merchandise. The store on Union Square was known as a landmark, especially during the holiday season, when large crowds would gather out front of its windows to gaze at the whimsical offerings.
This year marks a new beginning for Gump’s, as it has been purchased by new investors. The Chachas family has bought the trademark and brand name. John Chachas will lead the company as chief executive and his daughter, Annie Chachas, will serve as executive vice president. John and his wife, Diane Chachas, have long been shoppers at the store and began investing in the company in 2007. Their three children, Annie, Christopher and Jack Chachas become the owners of a majority interest in the company and will oversee the re-launch of the brand in North America and Europe. Antoinette Gump, a great great grand-daughter of the original founder has said she is enthused to see the company in family hands.
Annie Chachas has said that her family intends to honor the unique heritage of the firm. For over a hundred years the company has been famous for its offerings of beautiful jewelry, jade, and pearls from Asia as well as fine housewares, furnishings, crystal and china wares. She also said the Chachas family will maintain the same high level of quality customer service yes that the Gump’s were known for.
The new store is set to open in the fall of 2019, in time for the holiday shopping season. The start for the new store will be a bit modest, one might say. At 2,000 square feet, it will be quite a bit smaller than the original store. However, in a bit of a twist of history, it will be located at 250 Post Street, which the Gump family has a majority stake in. This was the original company’s location from 1909 to 1994.
Of course, being the 21st century, the new company will have an online presence as well. The Chachas family plans to inform their fan base and to excite new customers through their web site www.gumps.com and with their social presence on Twitter and Instagram. The Chachas family is expecting a great holiday shopping experience and plans for growth thereafter. Annie Chachas mentions that there is a unique history here, with Christmas having been shared for 158 seasons and with millions of loyal customers. Residents of San Francisco and travelers to the Bay Area from around the world can once again look forward to gazing through the Gump’s windows at the exquisite collection of finely crafted tableware, apparel, ornaments and jewelry sparkling in Christmas displays.
Antoinette Gump is excited as well to have this family-owned operation once again in the Gump building. Modest though its start might be, Ms. Gump says she knows of many, many people who can’t wait for it to open.