MILAN — Giorgio Presca is joining Furla as the Italian accessories company’s new CEO.
He succeeds chief operating officer Devis Bassetto, who also temporarily held the position of CEO after the exit of Mauro Sabatini in April.
Presca was most recently CEO of Clarks. He previously held the role of CEO of Golden Goose, Geox and Citizens of Humanity through his 30 years in the fashion industry, starting at the now-defunct giant manufacturing company GFT. He has also held executive positions at brands including Diesel and Levi’s.
Giovanna Furlanetto, president of Fondazione Furla, said Presca “is a skilled leader with a strong ability in reinforcing global fashion brands and driving profitable and safe growth.”
The executive, she continued, “shares our values and our determination to establish Furla as a real democratic brand, the only Italian brand in its category. This appointment also stands to highlight my whole family’s willingness to continue with the full control of our business and lead it into the future.”
This comment is material, as it was made after several sources speculated that the Furlanetto family was considering a sale of a stake in the company.
As reported in March, Milan-based sources said Furla had tapped Lazard as its adviser and that a dossier was circulating in Milan.
In 2016, owner Giovanna Furlanetto set in motion plans to take Furla public, but this project never materialized. Furla was founded in Bologna in 1927 by Aldo Furlanetto, Giovanna’s father.
“Furla is a uniquely positioned brand with a strong heritage and high contemporary appeal. I look forward to work with my new colleagues, Mrs. Furlanetto, and the board to build the pillars for the future success of Furla and maximize its unexploited potential,” Presca said.
Sabatini in January last year succeeded Alberto Camerlengo. The latter was named executive president of the board. Sabatini for more than 18 years was CEO of Effeuno, a leather goods manufacturing company he founded in Tuscany and Furla’s supplier and longtime partner.
In 2018, Furla took control of Effeuno, which is based in Tavarnelle Val di Pesa, a 40-minute drive from Florence. The takeover was part of Furla’s strategy to invest in Italy and to strengthen the group’s supply chain, boosting production.
As reported, a strong performance in North America and in the Europe, Middle East and Africa regions contributed to a 12% increase in first-half revenues at Furla, which totaled 155.3 million euros.
Thanks to a recovery of local spending and a return of tourist flows, the Europe, Middle East and Africa area saw a 43% jump in revenues. In North America, sales soared 74%.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictions enforced in the first quarter of the year in Japan, the largest single market for the company, revenues in the region increased 6%.
On the other hand, the measures to curb the spread of the pandemic in China and a rationalization of Furla’s points of sale in the Asia Pacific area drove revenues in the region down 27%.
As of June 30, the global number of stores amounted to 432, compared with 452 in 2021.
Last year, Furla revenues amounted to 305.8 million euros, up 7.6% compared with 2020.
This story was reported by WWD and originally appeared on WWD.com.