The Tuscan leather industry attracts German capitals for one of its brands emerging at the international level. The Halder group, one of the principal operators in private equity in Germany, among those focused on small and medium enterprises, completed its first investment in Italy by selecting one of the excellencies of Tuscan craftsmanship, the leather industry, and by betting on Bottega Manifatturiera Borse, a company born in Scandicci in 1968 that specializes in luxury handbags and accessories for both some of the sector’s principal brands as well as for their own production under the “Gianfranco Lotti” brand.
At the end of September, Halder, which through the currently active fund has a financial capacity of 325 million, announced having purchased the majority share in the company founded by the very same Lotti, who will stay on alongside the new owners as both a manager and a stockholder. The operation is geared towards supporting the growth of Bottega Manifatturiera Borse’s turnover, with the goal of doubling it in the medium period, from the nearly 35 million Euros reached in 2012, and primarily to support the international expansion with the opening of stores with the Gianfranco Lotti brand in New York (the project should be completed within 18 months) and in the luxury capitals of emerging economies: to this end, the group is already working on a partnership in distribution to launch an assault on the Chinese market.
The accessories (handbags and leather goods) sector is, alongside jewelry, one of the strongest segments of the luxury market – writes Halder in the note relative to the investment – jus the accessories grow by more than 15% yearly in recent years, and in 2012 the two sectors (accessories and jewelry) have jointly represented more than 50% of the volume of the global market, accounting for 211 billion Euros. The demand for luxury goods – the German investor continues – is principally driven by the creation of wealth in emergent economies, and particularly Asia: over a five year span, the thirty main emergent markets are expected to increase their import of luxury by nearly 50% compared to 2012.
The Scandicci company, which employs 70 people, came close to a 35 million turnover in previous years: about 40% comes from the sale of their own brand items, whereas the other 60% comes from the supply of finished products to luxury’s big international names. According to the founder’s declarations at the beginning of 2013, the group is also working on the expansion of the production sites in order to be able to create nearly 180,000 handbags yearly, compared to the current production of 120,000.