The Italian footwear market is an enormous industry with a long tradition. Italy is among the leading footwear manufacturers in the world and the first in Europe. The country holds almost one percent of the production worldwide, making the ranking together with big shoe producers such as China, India, and Vietnam. The Italian company Geox ranks as the largest retailer, with the most shops in Itay. Other popular retailers in the country, also well-known worldwide, are Footlocker, Tod's, Deichmann, and Desigual. The footwear industry also represents an important source of employment. In 2019, this sector counted roughly 75 thousand employees in Italy.
Italian shoes are famous worldwide. Indeed, Italy exports a large amount of shoes, accounting for a value of over eight billion euros. Figures show that the export value of Italian shoes has been growing in recent years, even if the export volume decreased slightly. Leather shoes account for the highest value with an export of over 6 billion euros in 2019. In fact, the Italian leather industry represents another outstanding sector for the country: Italy is the main exporter of leather goods in the world. In terms of value, Italy heads the ranking, followed by the United States and Brazil.
Renowned footwear brands from Italy include Geox, Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Tod's, Fendi and others. In total, there are over four thousand companies in the Italian shoe industry. Generally, such brands produce not only footwear but also clothing. However, some of these brands are mainly known for their shoes. For instance, almost 90 percent of Geox revenues are generated by footwear sales. Similarly, the selling of footwear contributes to over 40 percent of Salvatore Ferragamo's revenues, whereas only a small percentage comes from the apparel sector. For Prada, the share of sales is more equally distributed: clothing and footwear account for 40 percent of company revenue.
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Research expert covering apparel industry and general merchandise