Tod's

MILAN — Tod’s SpA chairman and chief executive officer Diego Della Valle and his brother Andrea Della Valle, vice chairman, unveiled on Wednesday the new 21,600-square-foot manufacturing plant built to support Central Italy’s area, which was hard hit by a deadly earthquake in August 2016. The factory is located in Arquata del Tronto, in the Marche region, and is slated to produce Tod’s shoes, employing 50 people.

The entrepreneur and his family invested 10 million euros in the project, according to sources.

Tod’s own headquarters in Casette d’Ete are located 68 miles away from Arquata del Tronto, in a region that is a historical footwear manufacturing hub.

The earthquake killed almost 300 people in Central Italy, including 51 in Arquata del Tronto.

As reported, Della Valle’s pledge to support Arquata was made in October last year during former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s visit to Tod’s headquarters.

Current Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni attended the unveiling of the plant.

Della Valle has always been a firm supporter of Made in Italy production and the group’s craftsmanship is a source of pride for him.

The entrepreneur has long been vocal about “the world of solidarity,” as he told WWD in July last year, discussing his “Noi Italiani [We Italians]” project, which was seen by the media as a political party, signaling his stepping into politics. Della Valle dismissed the notion, saying, “’Noi Italiani’ is focused on supporting the country on what is perhaps the most important thing we have — the artistic and cultural patrimony, which means a lot of new jobs, especially for young people.” He said he thought all companies should initiate the “solidarity operation in their territories to support people who need it the most.”

Della Valle’s most public effort to support the country so far has been the restoration of the Colosseum. In 2010, he revealed he was pledging 25 million euros for the works.