W. Wiggins Ltd was established as a saddlery and leather business in Lower Hutt in 1866 by the founder William Wiggins, who emigrated from Ireland. William Wiggins was both a manufacturer and retailer of high-quality leather goods whose achievements were recognised at the time through numerous awards and diplomas.
The early part of the twentieth century was a period of strong sustained growth for the company. W. Wiggins Ltd was a major supplier of military equestrian contracts to the Government for both the Boer War (1904 -1905) and World War 1 (1914- 1918). This was the period that gave the company strong momentum for the future and it is interesting to note that the company at this time employed 85 full-time staff to maintain the production required.
After World War I with the advent of the motor car and the consequent decline in demand for saddlery and harnesses, W. Wiggins moved into different markets which included: the shoe, bag, upholstery, and automotive re-trimming trades. In recent years the company has advanced strongly into the growing outdoor fabric industry and the commitment to embrace new designs and fabric technology has never been stronger. After more than 150 years W. Wiggins Ltd is still a family-owned business with offices and warehouse centres in Auckland and Christchurch. The company has always enjoyed the benefits of a long-serving, loyal staff, which combined with our constant drive to be a customer-driven organisation, ensures that we have the structure to flourish in the twenty-first century.