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Bruno Magli is an Italian luxury brand that specializes in shoes and leather goods for men and women. The brand has catered to loyal customers throughout its 80 year history including celebrities, royals and fashion elite and continues to evolve its heritage by reinventing luxury essentials for a new generation.
Founded in 1936, siblings Marino, Mario and Bruno started a small business in the basement of their home in Bologna, Italy, after learning the art of shoemaking from their grandfather. This space was transformed in to an artisan workshop, where the trio began to accept contract work until the first Magli Shoe Factory (Calzaturificio Magli) was established later that same year. The footwear produced exhibited a unique flexibility and functionality, which in addition to its fine leathers, became the Magli trademark and defined its industrial debut.
Shortly after World War Two in 1947, the company took a major step forward with the creation of their first manufacturing facility. The brand used the opportunity to expand the men’s line of shoe products, adding the famous Bruno Magli moccasin, while at the same time enlarging their commercial base.
In 1969, Bruno Magli moved to a larger, more modern factory in Bologna, a city it continues to occupy today. They introduced their range of specialty shoes for women, and the beauty and innovation of the designs were quickly recognized and embraced internationally.
From the 1980s onwards, the Magli company opened over forty retail stores located throughout America, Australia, China and Europe, where they began to take a new direction in the women’s business, branching out from classic styles to a more fashion forward aesthetic and adding handbags, apparel, accessories and leather goods to the line.
Through the early 2000s, Bruno Magli continued to strengthen its image under the direction of Rita Magli, with new store designs, advertising, and updated product. The goal was to create an entire collection for men and women that was fashion forward yet maintained the quality traditionally associated with the company.
While the Bruno Magli brand continues to grow and service a loyal global consumer base, its designs and archives can be seen across the industry and is universally known to be an inspiration to shoe designers for many luxury brands.
In 2001, the Luxembourg-based investment fund Opera, half owned by Bulgari, acquired a controlling interest in Bruno Magli. In 2007 Opera sold the brand to UK private equity fund Fortelus Capital, and in 2014, Swiss Da Vinci Invest fund acquired the brand.
In January 2015, Marquee Brands LLC announced its acquisition of the Bruno Magli brand and related intellectual property assets from Bruno Magli S.p.A. Marquee Brands, a brand acquisition, licensing and development company, was launched by the private equity group Neuberger Berman in September 2014.
Since its inception, Bruno Magli shoes have been worn by many celebrities around the world; with customers ranging from Queen Elizabeth II of England to Sophia Loren, Princess Margaret, Christina Onassis and Marilyn Monroe. Today, clients include fashion industry and Hollywood elite such as Gwyneth Paltow, Jared Leto, Naomi Watts and Zoe Saldana and politician Hillary Clinton.