This footwear brand that is ‘Made in Italy’ or rather proudly ‘Made in Barletta’, popular among younger generations, and eco-friendly, is headed by Best Group with its longtime tradition in footwear manufacturing. In a short time, Privato has succeeded in conquering a public, above all female, which for some time had been on the lookout for beautiful and trendy shoes that were produced ethically and with respect for the environment. The spark between brand and public was immediate and today the Privato community is extensive, active on social networks, and continues to be won over by the brand’s skillful mix of fashion/ethics/price. We spoke of this with Adriana Mariano, CEO Best Group and Founder Privato.

How did the idea of launching a new footwear brand during the full lockdown come about?

In reality, the project had been in the works for some time, because we had already received some signals from the market – above all from Northern Europe – for a well-made shoe that was aesthetically attractive, but also sustainable and respectful of mankind and the environment. These are the origins of Privato, an eco-friendly, young, B2C brand, which is exclusively proposed on the site.

Why did you choose such a unique name?

The name of the brand reflects its soul, that of a product that speaks to the innermost core of people and their most important values, which believes in ethically responsible manufacturing and respect for that which surrounds us, but also a quality standard destined to last over time… In other words, a Made in Barletta quality with a green soul!

Who is it aimed at?

Privato is born from the need of younger generations to have footwear that is attractive, yet sustainable, at the same time. In the collection, we have above all unisex sneakers, but also sandals and extremely feminine pumps with a trendy look. Our target is made up above all by women aged 25 to 25 years, who today are more aware of green and sustainable themes.

Let’s talk about the collection…

We have two main collections. The Vegana collection is made from natural and synthetic fabrics, with the exclusive use of water-based glues. The Sustainable collection instead is made from recycled PET and vegetable-based materials like Pinatex and corn fibre. We are very attentive to the selection of our suppliers and control along the entire supply chain, with the aim of guaranteeing an eco-sustainable and traceable production. We also have a line of knitwear, sweatshirts in organic eco cotton, and a line of bags.

Is it a certified product?

Certainly, Privato is a PETA Animal Free certified brand and the materials used are GRS  - Global Recycle Standard certified (containing at least 20% pre-consumer and post-consumer recycling materials) and GOTS – Global Organic Textile Standard (at least 70% certified organic natural fibres) certified.

What are your strengths when compared to other eco-sustainable products present on the market?

Ours is a beautiful product, which conquers even those men and women who are extremely attentive to the latest fashion trends. I’ve never understood why sustainable and green footwear must be unattractive… Ours is also a niche product made with attention to fairness, you might even call it a trendy ‘slow fashion’. Last, but not least, in terms of importance is the price, because our sneakers cost around 60 euros to the general public, so it is an extremely competitive price. Finally, for the most demanding consumers, we also offer the possibility to personalise some models with writings, dedications, and designs, thanks to the collaboration with local artists. We even have a line of bags in a limited edition made from production scraps, which can also be personalised.

At a little more than a year from the launching of the brand, how is it going?

I would say very well! We immediately noticed great interest in our brand, and, in fact, today we have a rather extensive community that follows us and actively interacts with us. This community is also curious to learn more about the ‘behind the scenes’ of our products and see how we choose materials or how we undertake the various phases in production, etc.… In other words, we ‘put ourselves out there’ and this has allowed us to create a genuinely unique relationship of proximity and trust with our public.

Do you participate in any fairs?

With our company Best Group, we have always participated in Expo Riva Schuh, an event of international reference. With Privato, we also exhibit at fairs that are more ‘specialised’ and dedicated to sustainability and organic products, like Sana in Bologna, where we sell directly to the public.