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A complex year, marked by a geopolitical and climatic scenario – a crucial aspect for fashion – which reserved many surprises, most of them unpleasant. «Given everything we cannot control and which has affected our company and the entire sector, in 2023 we did what we do best – explains Sandro Veronesi, founder and president of the Calzedonia group, recently renamed Oniverse – . We have focused on the potential of individual brands, trying to enhance them in Italy and abroad, with important investments and thanks to the ideas and passion of all the people who work with us.”
What pushed you to change the name, which is always a risky move when a brand is well known?
Calzedonia, born in 1986, was the starting point and it is right that in all these years it has had, so to speak, the honor and perhaps the burden of identifying the entire group. In recent decades, however, the portfolio has expanded not only in terms of brands, but also sectors, going beyond fashion in the strict sense. Today, alongside Calzedonia, which will always remain a brand focused on the universe of socks and, in summer, swimwear, there are the Intimissimi, Intimissimi Uomo and Tezenis brands, which belong to a contiguous area. But we also have Falconeri (clothing and accessories in cashmere and fine yarns), Atelier Emé (wedding dresses) and Antonio Marras. Then there is Signorvino, wine bars with catering and, last but not least, Cantieri del Pardo, an acquisition in the nautical sector that dates back to August this year. Oniverse is the anagram of Veronesi, but they pointed it out to me after the fact. What I especially like about this name is the non-didactic reference to something all-encompassing.
Considering the size of the group, over 3 billion in 2002, and the complexity of the portfolio, one thinks of other large groups, which are however listed. Are you thinking about the stock market?
We have just been included in the Pambianco company’s annual ranking of listable companies. To be precise, we are on the top step of the podium, followed by the Giorgio Armani group and Golden Goose. A result that makes us proud, because it reflects not only the size of the company but also its solidity, potential and governance. But the answer is no: in the short term we are not thinking about landing on the stock market, even if preparing for the eventuality is still a good way to improve every internal process and to make choices with a medium and long term horizon.