El Naturalista, which was previously distributed in the U.S. exclusively by the company of Ralph Libonati, run by his son Steve Libonati, has set up its own subsidiary in Somerset, New Jersey. The implementation of the transition, which started about six months ago, was finally completed this month.
El Naturalista uses the facilities of its former distributor, which holds a share of 10 percent in the U.S. subsidiary of the Spanish brand. Juan de la Peña, former international commercial director and member of one of the founding families of the brand, assumed the post of chief executive of the U.S. subsidiary at the beginning of this year.
He is supported by Francesca Carbonell, who has been assigned the post of head of finance and client support. Juan de la Peña's brother, Pablo de la Peña, has taken over his former international sales responsibilities at the brand's headquarters in Spain.
Like some other brands of European-made products, El Naturalista had some problems in the U.S. due to a strong euro and the economic crisis in the U.S. Sales declined there by 25 percent in 2013 as compared to the previous year.
El Naturalista recorded total sales of about €35 million in 2013, stable compared to the previous year. A total of 800,000 pairs of shoes were sold, with 20,000 pairs in the U.S. market alone. Sales increased in Spain, Russia and Mexico, which are new markets that El Naturalista has entered since the end of 2012. The Spanish brand is about to sign up a local distributor in South Korea. El Naturalista has already hired a sales employee for the Colombian market.
At the GDS show in Düsseldorf earlier this month, El Naturalista presented its new logo, which was launched in the frameworks of the brand's tenth anniversary. The new logo is intended to reflect the brand's aim to move in a more stylish and fashionable direction. It will be used for the first time in the autumn/winter 2014/15 collections.