Gucci teams up with Italian bank to help suppliers’ ecological transition
Gucci has taken a further step to accelerate the fashion industry’s ecological transition. The Kering group’s leading label has announced a partnership with Italy’s top bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, to facilitate its suppliers’ transition towards “inclusive, sustainable practices,” prompting them to embark on “a path to improve their social and environmental sustainability,” in line with the directives set out by the Italian government in the country’s post-Covid recovery plan, known as the national plan of recovery and resilience (PNRR).
Thanks to this partnership, companies working for Gucci will benefit from easier access to bank credit, via financing lines provided by Intesa Sanpaolo to achieve specific business objectives linked to environmental, social and corporate governance practices (ESG), such as switching to renewable energy or cutting down on waste and water consumption.
Gucci has presented this project as “unique in Italy.” Actually, in 2017 the Italian Fashion Chamber (CNMI) launched a similar initiative, aimed at providing practical support to develop an eco-responsible supply chain via the ‘Funding Sustainability’ financing project deployed with UniCredit, another major Italian banking group. The plan was to support select SMEs by means of medium and long-term loans for the upgrading of their manufacturing facilities.
It is not the first time that Intesa Sanpaolo has provided loan finance linked to ESG criteria in the fashion and luxury sector, having notably granted similar types of ‘green’ loans to Salvatore Ferragamo and Moncler.
The partnership with Gucci aims to set a new example by extending the financing opportunity to the label’s entire supply chain. Given Gucci’s size, the initiative is likely to have a more profound effect on Italy’s manufacturing system. “This is an important step because only together—public and private sectors, large companies and SMEs—can we reach the critical goals for society and for Italy advocated by the National Recovery and Resilience Plan,” said Gucci’s CEO Marco Bizzarri.
The initiative is inspired by the partnership model tested last year with Intesa Sanpaolo’s ‘Supply chain development programme’, focused on supply chain support and introduced in May 2020 to help Gucci suppliers at the height of the Covid-19 crisis. Thanks to the programme, over 150 of Gucci’s Italian suppliers have benefited in the last 12 months from loans worth €230 million in total.
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