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Südwolle Group acquires majority stakes in Safil and Gruppo Tessile Industriale

By Angela Gonzalez-Rodriguez


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German group Südwolle Group, leading yarn producer for pure wool and wool blends apparel, has entered into an agreement to acquire a 100 percent stake in Safil S.p.A. as well as an 80 percent stake in Gruppo Tessile Industriale (GTI) S.p.A.

German producer has acquired both stakes in the Italian worsted yarn manufacturers from Finsavio S.p.A., a holding company for 100 percent of Safil shares and 50 percent of GTI shares, as well as from the founder and CEO of GTI, Alberto Frignani, who currently holds 50 percent of GTI shares.

“With these complementary acquisitions, Südwolle Group enhances its product range and capability to address client needs in customised, fashion, luxury as well as non-apparel segments. Furthermore, the group will increase its footprint in the European and especially in the important Italian yarns market. Both Safil and GTI are established family businesses that currently generate the majority of their turnover in Italy. With the global reach and the financial strength of Südwolle Group as a reliable industrial partner, Safil and GTI will be able to enter their next phase of growth, expanding within and beyond Europe,” announced the German group on Tuesday.

In the same vein, Alberto Frignani, CEO of GTI, added: “I am convinced that GTI, thanks to its new partner Südwolle Group, will be in an excellent position to develop its unique know- how in natural fibres and its product innovation potential, and I am excited to lead GTI in this new phase of its growth path”.

After the transaction in completed in the coming weeks, Frignani will remain a 20 percent shareholder in GTI and he will continue to lead GTI as CEO. Alberto and Cesare Savio, the sons of Safil founder Fernando Savio and owners of Finsavio S.p.A., will continue to support the future growth path of Safil as an individual unit under the umbrella of Südwolle Group. This way, CEO Cesare Savio will continue to lead the company and CFO Alberto Savio will continue to advise the company, according to the joint release issued by all parties.

In fiscal 2014, Südwolle Group posted revenues of 340 million euros. Up to 85 percent of the total company´s revenues come to its business with the apparel industry – both fashion and non-fashion, such as work wear. The remaining 15 percent of revenues are generated with non-apparel products, such as yarns for seat covers for the automotive, airline, railway and furnishing industry.

Meanwhile, Safil, based in Gaglianico in Italy’s Biella province, is a renowned supplier of worsted yarns for knitwear (outwear, underwear, jersey), weaving (apparel and upholstery), hosiery, protection clothing and sportswear and has shown steady growth over the past years.

While the company’s main customers are also suppliers to the clothing industry, it traditionally focuses on different, usually more customised segments than Südwolle Group as well as non-clothing segments. Full-year revenues surpassed 90 million euros in 2014. Meanwhile, GTI, based in Verrone, posted revenues of more than 10 million euros last year.

Gruppo Tessile Industriale
Südwolle Group