Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Italian Annabelle acquires sick Tamil Nadu-based footwear company

Annabelle, an Italian shoemaker, has acquired AS Nissar Ahmed and Co., an Ambur-based sick leather footwear unit, in the leather belt of Tamil Nadu for an estimated €800,000 (Rs 4.6 crores approximately). This is reportedly the first foreign direct investment (FDI) in the formal male footwear segment.

All previous investments have been made in the sports footwear and the foot component sectors. The company will soon commence production to meet its global demands. Annabelle will significantly invest additional capital, besides bringing along technology to make world class footwear. Currently, AS Nissar Ahmed and Co. manufactures around 3000 pairs a day. Annabelle is looking to scale up the production capacity to about 10,000 pairs a day. The Italian shoemaker is sourcing 15,000 pairs of footwear and components, mainly leather shoe uppers and leather unit soles, from India and Bangladesh. Its manufacturing unit in the south of Italy produces close to 15,000 pairs a day.

According to a Council for Leather Exports report, global trade in leather footwear is worth $30 bn, while non-leather footwear is $18 bn. India's share is a mere 1.4% and 0.15% respectively.

Read The Economic Times article.

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