The Italian footwear industry

 

Italian shoes are synonymous with quality and excellence. Italy is the number one producer of footwear in the European Union, the tenth producer of footwear by number of pairs in the world and the seventh largest exporter of the product worldwide. While it is the third in terms of value (it is second in value, after China, which takes up two categories, in reference to footwear and leather uppers).

Italy has always been the undisputed leader among manufacturers of high-end and luxury footwear. The Italian footwear industry is undoubtedly one of the pillars of the Fashion System. With as many as 5,031 companies and 76,610 employees, a booming sector that has always been active, with annual sales of approximately 14 billion Euros, it is a reality of extreme importance – from a quantitative  and qualitative point of view – in the Italian economy.

The success of the industry is due to the vibrant entrepreneurial initiative and to the typical structure of the sector, which has arisen in the context of a supply chain that consists of a system of sub-supply of raw materials, tanneries, accessories, machine manufacturers, model makers and stylists. The result is a territorial concentration of companies in areas that are organized into districts, mostly located in seven regions: Marche, Tuscany, Lombardy, Veneto, Campania, Puglia and Emilia Romagna, with as many as 23 provinces taking part in the trade.

Italy’ s primary position in the footwear industry of international markets is due to a strong competitive edge, based on the superior quality of the product, innovative capacity of the traditional manufacturing processes, and the capacity of specialized shoemakers, supported by local training schools, with state of the art technological and stylistically advanced methods. According to some market research, it seems that Italian consumers, like the Spanish, are the most demanding and quality-conscious. They are tough regarding high expectations of fashion content, brand identity, and they are willing to pay a premium price to have products with features are considered to be superior or provide greater satisfaction compared to other products. Precious leather, durable soles, elegance and trends: Italian shoes conquer all shoe lovers.

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