MILAN — MinervaHub SpA, spearheaded by president Matteo Marzotto, is quickly emerging as a leading aggregator of small- and medium-sized makers of components for luxury brands.
As reported, last month, MinervaHub acquired a majority stake in Jato 1991 Srl, which specializes in delicate and sophisticated hand embroideries, working over the years for some of the most established global luxury brands over the years, from Givenchy and Dior to Gucci, Valentino and Lanvin to name a few. On Monday, Marzotto, flanked by partners Franco Prestigiacomo and Gianfranco Piras, revealed MinervaHub has taken control of Gruppo Meccaniche Luciani, which designs and produces molds, socket punches and technical tools for footwear and leather goods of global high-end companies.
“MinervaHub already comprises 10 companies and we have other operations in mind, all very different but in the high-end sector,” said Marzotto, touting a precise “identity and consistency” of the group, which is investing in new resources, capital expenditures and processes for further development.
“We intend to follow up on this path,” said Prestigiacomo, remarking on group sales that are up 40 percent this year. Pro-forma revenues are expected to amount to 180 million euros in 2022, with earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of 50 million euros and a net profit margin of 15 percent.
“We have identified 50 companies we want to invest in,” continued Prestigiacomo. Six of these are expected to become part of MinervaHub by the first quarter of 2023, bringing the group to sales of around 300 million euros.
“Italy is full of very interesting companies that are struggling to tackle ESG issues, for example, and these have increasingly become a prerequisite for luxury companies,” he observed.
Investing for the long term and acknowledging the potential of these ventures, Prestigiacomo said MinervaHub has given a mandate to Rothschild to find a large-sized investor to accompany the group in future acquisitions.
MinervaHub was established earlier this year by leading luxury brands to protect a number of Italian manufacturers in the supply chain that help create garments and accessories. It is controlled by private equity fund Xenon VII SCA SICAV — RAIF, managed by partners Prestigiacomo and Piras.
MinervaHub stems from the fusion of XPP Seven and Ambria Holding, which Marzotto formed last year, as reported, taking majority stakes in Italian companies Zeta Catene and Galvanica Formelli, both located in the Arezzo, Tuscany area. Zeta Catene produces more than 2,000 types of chains of shapes, sizes and materials, such as brass and silver, as accessories for bags and shoes. Galvanica Formelli offers metal details, components and galvanic treatments for fashion accessories.
XPP Seven was founded in 2019, and grew to comprise Koverlux (based outside Bergamo); Quake (near Vicenza); Sp Plast Creating (Fermo) and Zuma Pelli Pregiate (Pisa). Koverlux is a leader in surface finishing for the fashion and accessories business, touted by Marzotto as the only company able to apply multiple finishes, from lacquering to flocking or engraving, to a single object. Quake is a specialist in automatic embroideries; SP Plast deals with the transformation of plastic materials, mold design and construction and product engineering, and Zuma is a tannery specialized in precious hides.
The partners noted that other investors are also working to protect Italy’s supply chain, but MinervaHub is unique as it is taking control of companies that make components. Their owners have been re-investing in MinervaHub.
“I see MinervaHub as a club with entrepreneurs at the center,” said Jacopo Giuseppe Tonelli, who founded Jato with her mother Giorgina Rapezzi. “The world changes, but we need to bring forward our made in Italy production. In any case, the priority is to be at the service of creativity.” Jato has a stunning archive of 12,000 pieces.
Marzotto, who first worked with Jato when he was helming Valentino, underscored the relevance of personal relationships. “It’s difficult to plan personal chemistry,” he said.
Piras also trumpeted the expertise of the entrepreneurs behind the companies as the perfect marriage with the resources and financial muscle of MinervaHub.
“The fact that the entrepreneurs decide to reinvest in MinervaHub is not banal, as they not only invest in their own company but in the whole group, opening up to extraordinary synergies and an incredible competitive advantage,” said Marzotto, noting for example that MinervaHub has recently generated three new trademarks.
The group comprises 720 employees at the moment and caters to a portfolio of around 1,000 clients.