Members of the Ferragamo family have signed a new three-year agreement that sets corporate governance guidelines for their relationship with the Salvatore Ferragamo Group, the company named after the famous shoe designer who set it up in Florence in 1927, and other family-owned assets.
In an interview with the daily Corriere della Sera, Ferruccio Ferragamo, the eldest of the Ferragamo siblings and chairman of Salvatore Ferragamo, said that the agreement is the extension of the previous pact whose goal is to foster “unity and harmony within the family and ensure a proper relationship between the family and the companies of the group.”
The agreement establishes that the group has to be run by outside managers and that family members wishing to work inside the group have to be vetted to ensure that they have the “appropriate skills and experience” for the job. It also specifies that only three family members can work in the head office, and those positions are currently occupied. Other vacancies exist in offices abroad.
Family members wanting to work for the group have to apply first with a family council, which will release a non-binding opinion. The chief executive of the group has the final say on whether to hire the candidate. The council has the same number of representatives of the six branches of the family, even if they do not have the same stakes in the group. Massimo Ferragamo chairs the council.
The agreement also forbids the use of the Ferragamo name in activities that could compete with Salvatore Ferragamo or create confusion regarding the relationship.
Ferruccio Ferragamo added that the family has received in the past, and recently, takeover offers for the company but the answer has always been negative. “To sell is a question that we have never asked ourselves.”
The company has been trading on the stock exchange since 2011. Since then, the Ferragamo family has controlled it through a holding company, Ferragamo Finanziaria, with a stake of 57.7 percent. The holding company is owned by six brothers.
Salvatore Ferragamo has been run since the spring of 2016 by a new chief executive, Eraldo Poletto. Like his predecessor, Michele Norsa, who became the CEO in 2006, he doesn't belong to the Ferragamo family.