Brioni, the renowned luxury brand known for its men’s formal wear, has announced its plans for a new restructuring as it strives to recover from the impact of the ongoing pandemic. Similar to its competitors Corneliani and Pal Zileri, Brioni has experienced significant setbacks due to the changing consumer behavior brought about by lockdown measures. In an effort to chart its path to recovery, the brand recently presented its 2021-2025 business plan at a meeting attended by key stakeholders, including representatives from the Italian Ministry for Economic Development, the Ministry of Labour, the regions of Lombardy and Abruzzo, and trade unions.

Brioni acknowledges the profound transformation that the luxury men’s formal wear market has undergone in recent years, and the pandemic has only intensified this shift. Altagamma estimates that sales in this segment experienced a 30% decline in 2020. This alarming drop in sales and production volume has raised concerns within Kering, the parent company that acquired Brioni in 2011.

Back in 2016, Brioni announced its plans to reduce its workforce by one-third, affecting around 400 employees out of a total of 1,150. However, only 140 employees were ultimately impacted as the company underwent a significant restructuring process. Despite subsequent investments in marketing, events, and creative direction, Brioni has struggled to regain its footing.

In its efforts to recover and maintain a strong presence in Italy while upholding its high product standards, Brioni now aims to streamline its costs and restructure its three production sites in Abruzzo. The brand’s renowned tailor’s workshops in Penne, Montebello di Bertona, and Civitella Casanova employ a workforce of over 1,000 people. As part of the restructuring, Brioni plans to lay off a maximum of 320 workers who are directly and indirectly involved in production. This difficult decision is seen as a necessary step to ensure the brand’s future recovery and development.

The newly announced strategy by Brioni is centered around the brand’s expansion into accessories and other product categories, with a strong focus on luxury casual wear to broaden its customer base. Brioni remains committed to maintaining its 100% made in Italy production. Additionally, the brand intends to optimize its investments in communication and distribution channels, streamline overhead expenses, and reorganize its production processes to achieve long-term efficiency and profitability.

Since Mehdi Benabadji took over as the leader of Brioni in 2020, the brand has enlisted the expertise of Austrian designer Norbert Stumpfl since September 2018. In 2019, Brioni collaborated with Brad Pitt, who acted as a brand ambassador, and more recently, the brand launched a capsule collection with the popular actor. Despite the challenges and setbacks faced by the brand, Brioni remains determined to overcome them and emerge stronger in the luxury men’s fashion market.

Useful Links:
1. BBC: Brioni – Luxury fashion house announces restructuring plans
2. Vogue Business: Brioni embarks on restructuring to recover from pandemic