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Milan — Troubled Italian knitwear manufacturer Metaphor, which operates a high-end knitting mill running both flat and circular knitting machines, has been sold to Gruppo Florence.

Reuters reports that Gruppo Florence, which was established in October 2020 to develop a platform supplying high-quality Made in Italy products to major luxury fashion brands, has acquired the Carpi-based business following its bankruptcy in August.

Operating in Italy, North America and China, Metaphor, which traditionally produces high-end knitted products, operates 40 of the latest circular and flat knitting machines including models from both Shima Seiki and Stoll in a range of gauges. Key fabrics include jacquard, intarsia and double knit fabrics as well as fully-fashioned knitwear.

“We are particularly proud of this operation, which is different from the others we normally do since we are taking control of a company that was about to close, jeopardizing a significant artisanal and technical know-how,” Gruppo Florence chairman Francesco Trapani told Reuters. “This acquisition confirms Gruppo Florence’s commitment toward the support of the Made in Italy manufacturing tradition, which is in high demand among the most prestigious global luxury brands.”

Following the acquisition, Massimiliano Tosi, former head of the planning and knitting department at Metaphor, is to take on the role of chief executive officer of the Italian manufacturing firm.

“We feel extremely lucky to become part of Gruppo Florence that, in less than a year, succeeded at becoming one of the points of reference of the Italian luxury supply chain,” Tosi said. “I’m sure that our team will live up to the trust that our investors and our clients are giving to Metaphor products’ quality.”

According to Reuters, this is the seventh acquisition for Gruppo Florence, which is controlled by private equity fund VAM Investments, Fondo Italiano d’Investimento and Italmobiliare.

Along with Emmegi, the group operates jersey specialist Manifatture Cesari; outerwear manufacturer Giuntini; Ciemmeci, a company specialized in the production of leather and fur pieces; scarves and shawls specialist Antica Valserchio, and knitwear firm Mely’s.

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