MILAN — The state-appointed administrators of IT Holding SpA have extended the deadline to submit binding offers for the purchase of the Gianfranco Ferré fashion house until Aug. 2.
The offers, which should include business plans to continue the company’s activities, were originally to be presented to commissioners Stanislao Chimenti, Andrea Ciccoli and Roberto Spada no later than July 6. Sources say the deadline for Ferré, controlled by IT Holding, was extended given the interest generated by the publication of sale regulations indicating terms and conditions and published in several newspapers last month. It appears several foreign bidders are looking at the dossier and are asking for additional time.
Binding offers for Italian manufacturing firm Ittierre SpA, also controlled by IT Holding, are also to be submitted no later than Aug. 2. Borletti Group, the department store operator that recently eyed investments in Escada and Christian Lacroix, was first said to be looking at Ittierre in January and appears to be still in the running and even considering the Ferré brand. Former bondholders of IT Holding — including Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan and Pioneer — are rumored to have joined forces with Borletti Group. There also is speculation that Italian manufacturer Albisetti is interested in Ittierre. Albisetti holds innerwear and beachwear licenses for brands including Jil Sander, John Galliano and Roberto Cavalli — the latter two a link with Ittierre, which produces apparel collections Just Cavalli and Galliano, in addition to C’N’C Costume National, Ermanno Ermanno Scervino, GF Ferré and Extè.
Last month, the administrators selected Italian retail developer Evante as the new owner of cashmere knitwear firm Malo, controlled by IT Holding, pending the approval of the ministry of economic development. Evante is a general contractor — a private company based in Arezzo, Italy — that develops luxury stores. Among its clients are brands such as Louis Vuitton and Prada and, most recently, Abercrombie & Fitch, which opened its first Italian flagship in Milan in October.
IT Holding has been in government-backed bankruptcy protection since February 2009.