A brand backed by an important history. Created in 1992 by the Brescian company Miber in Poncarale (which then went into liquidation in 2016), Keys was subsequently purchased in 2019 by the Asso S.p.A. group from Fermano, which is a leader in the production of footwear for children and owner of well-known brands like Asso and Balducci. Immediately following its acquisition, Asso set into motion a radical strategy of repositioning the Keys brand, with the aim of ‘rejuvenating it’ and making it more youthful and attractive, while preserving its legacy of expertise with clientele. A lengthy process that has required many resources and much energy, especially when considered in light of the historically difficult moment we are currently experiencing. Despite all this, today it is enjoying the results of its efforts in terms of image and sales. We spoke of this ‘rebirth’ with Paolo Toscani, Sales Manager at Asso Spa.

Let’s start from the new positioning of Keys…

We wanted to present a fresher, more youthful, and trendier image of the brand, while at the same time focusing on the ‘from day-to-night’ product, which can be worn on multiple occasions and over the course of the entire day. We accordingly worked at length on the product and collections to offer women a comfortable and versatile shoe, which is both fashionable and trendy.

What are the latest innovations you’re proposing for the FW2022/23 season?

First, we have extended the women’s collection by introducing next to sneakers, which represent the iconic Keys product, also new city models like flats, pumps, and high-heeled ankle boots for more elegant occasions. 

What’s new in terms of communication?

Since 2021, the brand ambassador of our ad campaign has been showgirl, TV conductor, and former model Elisabetta Gregoracci. This collaboration has been a source of great satisfaction because it embodies in the best way possible the image of the Keys woman: classy, and sometimes athletic, young, and sure of her own femininity, without being tacky or over-the-top. In 2022, we will undertake a project that will involve around twenty influencers all over Italy for the promotion of the brand on social networks.

How did the outbreak of the pandemic influence the brand’s strategies for development?

The outbreak of the pandemic primarily saw us revise the release date of our collections. We decided to present the collection earlier in order to make it easier to plan production and thereby guarantee the right delivery times, while helping to improve performance in terms of sell out.

What role do fairs play for your business?

Fairs are essential to reinforcing relationships with clientele, while also allowing us to come into contact with new customers. 

What are your markets of reference?

Today, the brand is successfully present in Italian multibrand small-scale distribution (around 70% of the total) as well as in European multibrand distribution, including especially countries like Belgium, Germany, France, and Spain. In the near future, our aim is to reach new markets like Japan, where we have been present for years with our Asso brand and where we have excellent partners.