One of the world’s most famous hat makers, Borsalino, whose stylish fedoras and straw panamas are popular with movie stars and celebrities, faces liquidation after a rescue plan was rejected by an Italian court on Monday.
A judge in the northern town of Alessandria, where the luxury hat maker was founded 160 years ago, refused a request for court protection from creditors, who are owed some 18 million euros ($21 million), a local trade union leader told Reuters.
“It’s dramatic if a solution is not found. Borsalino is part of Italian history, and it’s a big name abroad too,” Franco Armosino said.
Following Monday’s decision, two court-appointed officials will wind down the company to pay back creditors. Armosino said that unions expected further details “in the next days”.
Camperio, who bought the Borsalino trademark for about 18 million euros in May, could decide to bid for the company, or part of it.
The judge’s decision will not stop production at Borsalino, which has 134 workers and makes some 150,000 hats a year, both Armosino and Camperio said.
“We will remain committed to finding solutions that will preserve this iconic brand and the interest of all stakeholders …,” Camperio said in a statement, adding that bankruptcy had nothing to do with Haeres Equita’s management.
“We hope to continue to build a future for Borsalino,” Camperio added.