LONDON — Life at Connolly Leather was downright gloomy until recently, even for a renowned company that appoints the world's finest automobiles (Rolls-Royce, Aston Martin, Bentley and Ferrari), the Concorde and British Parliament with top-grade leather. Much larger U.S. leather suppliers, including Eagle Ottawa and Seton, were horning in on its hallmark automotive business by expanding their European presence. Connolly had even lost Rover Group business to Eagle Ottawa after BMW AG bought ...

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