The ad Paolo Gerani: “The format of Via Verri can serve for the stores that we will open in China” By Giulia Crivelli
“In Milan there is a newfound pride, as if everyone had grown tired of criticizing and now they finally want to do their part well and with optimism to boost the image of the city”.
It is with this optimistic attitude that Paolo Gerani, Gilmar CEO, approaches the fashion week that will animate Milan from September 23 to 28. For Iceberg, the flagship brand of the group, it will also be an opportunity for the official debut of Arthur Arbesser, a thirthy-something, as designer for women and for the official opening of the store on Via Verri, in the fashion district. << We chose Arthur for his talent, of course, but in recent months we have realized what a profound knowledge of the Italian history he has and how in love with Milan, our country and its textile culture he is- says Gerani -. Gilmar was born thanks to my mother Juliana in 1960, Iceberg in 1974, always from a vision and starting from knitting: Arthur has spent a lot of time in archives and in the collection that will be launched next Friday you will notice this return to basics, to the DNA of the brand >>. << I was born and raised in Austria, I studied in London for years and I live in Milan, a city that I love and of which I feel a bit of a 'testimonial’ - confirms Arbesser -. I always try to explain to my foreign friends how much charm, perhaps hidden, it has. Then there is also the world of the industry and manufacturing, including Gilmar which is a great example: having access to their archive is a great privilege >>.
The group led by Paolo Gerani holds some important licenses, among which is # 21, the brand by Alessandro Water which last year grew by 60% (see also the Sole 24 Ore of December 3, 2014 ). << Supporting young talents and designers who want to remain independent has always been a mission for my mother and now for me - adds Paolo Gerani -. For the designers of course it is an opportunity to grow, to advertise their brands, for us it is a great exercise of flexibility and in turn we learn a lot. It is not an easy road, and as an entrepreneur, in Italy, I feel I have to fight on too many fronts, starting from the bureaucracy. But in the end, thanks to passion, all difficulties can be overcome >>.
In 2014 the group’s turnover has reached 90 million (40 attributable to Iceberg) and in 2015 and 2016 more investments in retail will be made: “The format of the new store has two goals and we would like to use it for the next flagship: the first is to show the product at its best, thanks to the light-colored, almost neutral furnishings. The second is to transmit the values and history of the brand, thanks to some panels, which run continuously, projecting images of fashion shows, campaigns, as well as those of the styles which have shaped the history of Iceberg, like sweaters created by Jean Charles Castelbajac, called in Iceberg by my mother when he was still unknown, especially in Italy “. Iceberg’s exports reached 60% and the turnover is split equally between women and men. The core business is clothing but, in view of further development of retail, especially in China, there will be an increased focus on accessories. ” For the bags we acquire a specialized company, Idea 21, while for shoes we have a license with Virgili. And we are looking for the right partner for glasses “.