PARABIAGO, Italy — According to the latest theories of family property, it seems that family businesses, thanks to undeniable competitive advantages, represent the dominant business model in the Italian fashion industry. Can family property, especially those family businesses that operate in an industry such as fashion, enable Made-in-Italy to remain competitive?
Fratelli Rossetti World
Fratelli Rossetti, one of the major Made-in-Italy luxury shoe producers, famous for its unique designs and craftsmanship and characterised by a strong family identity, has proven that keeping it in the family can be competitive in the international arena.
Established in 1953 by Renzo Rossetti in Parabiago, a small town in northwest Italy, the business initially specialised in sports shoes’ using artisan production. Fratelli Rossetti founded his own company in the early 1950s, turning its production to classic shoes. Through an intensive period of collaboration with various artisanal shoemakers, the company began producing classic ‘mocassini’ shoes for men. With the opening of its flagship store in New York, the company started producing womens shoes and imported fiocchetti for the first time
In the 1980s, in collaboration with the designer Vignelli, the company created the ‘Fratelli Rossetti’ logo after the brand’s internationalisation and the opening of boutiques in Paris and London. Currently, Fratelli Rossetti has stores located all around the world and is still expanding with the opening of stores in Asia — Bangkok, Daegu and Macau, and in the Middle East and Africa. In 2012, Fratelli Rossetti also launched its Made-to-Mesure service on the re-opening of its flagship store on Montenapoleone, Milan.
Today, Fratelli Rossetti is run by Diego, Luca and Dario Rossetti, who succeeded their father Renzo in managing the family company with great attention to tradition, quality and passion. Despite [economically] advantageous offers, the brothers decided to remain independent making Fratelli Rossetti a real Italian-made symbol of quality, appreciated worldwide.
We have had the pleasure to speak to Diego, Luca and Dario about their successful collaboration in this family company. We asked them some useful advice on how to run and manage a family business effectively, and the [family] secret behind the success story of Fratelli Rossetti.
As Diego says: “The timeless quest for quality is fundamental. Since the founding of the company, we have been constantly updating our standards to both enhance the techniques of the time and meet the habits and needs of our customers. This all happens without forgetting to maintain and foster our know-how.”
In one word, I would say: specialising in being shoemakers for over 2 generations is our ‘secret recipe’.
And speaking about classic Italian elegance, with particular reference to the timeless style of Fratelli Rossetti, Luca comments: “We try to cater to those customers who are accustomed to good value for money: they not only seek for the trends of the seasons, which are of course interesting, but for a product that speaks to their desire for good quality, comfort and the best raw materials. At this crossroad, style meets function and consistency. We believe that this is how loyalty through time comes without saying.”
As Diego highlights, the ingredients for a successful family business are included in these three simple tips:
- Respect the past with an eye wide open to the new
- Learn from your mistakes
- Be positive and proactive
How to avoid the traps that can destroy family businesses? Dario suggests:
Talk to your family, spend good quality time with them, travel as soon as you can. Only open, peaceful minds can innovate while they maintain their positions steady.
Regarding the near future, the plans of the Rossetti brothers are clear: “We will continue to pamper our customers as we approach new ones: impeccable quality and smart service (see our MTO (made-to-order) Toledo action), and campaigns for the youngest, such as the #sexyinflats action,” Luca concludes.