Angela Missoni, Rosita Missoni and Luca Missoni

MILAN – After years of rumors circulating around Missoni and a possible sale of the family-owned company–always denied by the Missonis– a deal was revealed Friday, the first day of Men’s Fashion Week here, under which FSI Mid-Market Growth Equity Fund will take a minority holding in the brand.

The fund will take a 41.2 percent stake and the Missoni family will continue to have control with 58.8 percent of the shares. The operation sees a capital increase and no financial debt for Missoni. Michele Norsa, industrial partner of FSI, will become vice president of Missoni. Angela Missoni will hold the role of president and her mother Rosita retain the title of honorary president.

The goal is to focus on international expansion, product extension and retail development in key markets.

Last year, the Italian government took a major stake in a new Milan-based sovereign fund being launched to support Italian companies, including in fashion. FSI SGR, or Fondo Strategico Italiano (Italian Strategic Fund), set up a new fund called FSI Mid‐Market Growth Equity Fund with the goal to support leading Made in Italy companies that share growth potential and the need to expand in international markets and fashion was understood to be a major area of interest for the new fund. Former Salvatore Ferragamo and Valentino chief executive officer Norsa joined the fund as an industrial partner, providing his expertise in the areas of design, fashion, food and hospitality.

Last year, Angela Missoni celebrated her 20th anniversary since taking her first bow on the catwalk for the family-owned brand. The company was founded in 1953 by her mother Rosita and her late father Ottavio, known as Tai. Rosita is in charge of the brand’s home collection. The designer and her close-knit family were struck by tragedy in 2013, when the airplane Vittorio Missoni, the business-minded sibling, was traveling on from Los Roques to Caracas, Venezuela, went missing in January that year. In May that year, their father died at 92.  Angela’s brother Luca is focused on the brand’s art projects and archives. The Missoni’s tapped general manager Emilio Carbonera Giani three years ago.

The latest figures reported consolidated sales in 2016 totaled 63.4 million euros. Of this, licenses corresponded to 10.9 million euros. The company counted five boutiques in Italy and six outside the country, as well as two outlets in Italy. Exports accounted for 74 percent of sales.

This is the latest in a string of M&A deals, coming a day after the announcement of the acquisition of the Dries Van Noten business by Puig, the family-owned Spanish fragrance and fashion firm, and Paris-based leather goods house Lancel from Compagnie Financière Richemont by the Italian Piquadro. Earlier this year, Chinese conglomerate Fosun International swooped in and acquired control of French luxury house Lanvin while Amsterdam-based private equity firm Sapinda Holdings bought luxe lingerie company La Perla.