Da Vinci Invest, an investment firm run by Hendrik Klein in Zurich, is the new owner of Bruno Magli. The surprise move comes after reports last October that Fortelus Capital Management, the British fund that acquired the Italian shoe company in 2007, had started exclusive negotiations with an Asian consortium that included E-Land, the big Korean group that owns Lario 1898, Sutor Mantellassi, Mandarina Duck, Coccinelle and other Italian fashion firms.

Manfred Ebensberger has been appointed chief executive of Bruno Magli with immediate effect, but he was not yet available to discuss the company's future plans at the time of going to press. Little could be found out about him except for the fact that he studied architecture in Innsbruck and Veneice and that he spent 20 years in the real estate sector, working among other with the Kronberg group on several projects in many different countries. He speaks German, Italy and English fluently.

Ebensberger takes the place of Armin Müller, the German management consultant who has led a financial turnaround for the company in the last two years, closing down its factory in Bologna and hiring new management and a new creative director, Kim Kibardin.