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Apr 20, 2023
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The struggle is over for Brioni

Translated by
Apr 20, 2023

The struggle is over for Brioni. Now that the Covid crisis is over, the luxury men's clothing label founded in Rome in 1945 has confirmed its rebound. The brand owes it success to an in-depth reorganisation and major work on its image with a new boutique concept, which is proving to be very successful, as illustrated by the recent reopening of its Milan store.

The brand's clientele is younger - Brioni

On the occassion of the Design Fair, Brioni unveiled its newly renovated flagship store on Via del Gesù. It highlights the historic manufacturer MITA (Manifattura italiana tappeti artistici), with whom Brioni has partnered to reissue a selection of carpets and tapestries created by this Genoese workshop in the mid-twentieth century. The decor of the label's new boutiques includes textile elements, along with various pieces of furniture from the 1930s to the 1980s, created by great designers such as Gio Ponti, Carlo and Tobia Scarpa or Luigi Caccia Dominioni. The boutiques have been designed to ressemble a passionate collector's appartment with Italian design elements throughout.

"The new layout makes our customers feel at home and the new concept has boosted sales with double-digit increases in each renovated shop," says Mehdi Benabadji, who took over the reins of the luxury house in 2020. "The brand has been doing very well since 2021 with constant growth at really high levels. It now benefits from a much more consistent image, with the collections, communication and shops all linked together," he continues

Women and fragrances

Alongside the store makeovers, the brand's offer has been redefined, still centred around formal wear, which remains Brioni's core business, the styling was taken over in September 2018 by Austrian designer Norbert Stumpfl. "We have thought about and reworked formal clothing in a more relaxed fashion, in both the proportions and the way of dressing, with lighter constructions. We introduced some sporty pieces into the informal ready-to-wear range, but without expanding it too much. Above all, the focus has been on leather goods accessories and shoes," says the CEO.

In 2021, the brand also developed a perfume collection with the Lalique group and recently launched a capsule collection dedicated to women.

The store has been designed as an appartment with Italian design elements - Brioni

The company, which in the past suffered from overcapacity in relation to demand, has reviewed its production logic "to make it more efficient, without affecting know-how". In fact, even though it has reduced the number of its craftsmen over the years, it has maintained its three production sites in Abruzzo, particularly in Penne, where its famous tailors' workshops have always been located. It now employs 750 people there. The company also has a shirt production unit in Curno, Lombardy, employing 50 people. In total, the company has 1,300 employees.

"We have maintained a very high-end positioning without ever giving up our identity, which is strongly linked to formal wear, where we are recognised as a reference, even among young people. Our customers come to the shop to see the details, touch and appreciate the exceptional fabrics our handmade suits are made from," says Mehdi Benabadji. Brioni has seen its clientele get younger in recent years, particularly in the United States, its largest market, and in Europe.

In the coming months, several new store openings are planned, notably in Dallas in the United States, Kyoto in Japan and China. The brand is also exploring the possibility of establishing itself in Mexico and Dubai, while from July it will take over its network of five shops in South Korea. Currently, it is distributed through 35 directly operated outlets, as well as through franchise shops and resellers, including major international department stores' chains.

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