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Italian Brand P448 Drops Unisex Capsule of Recycled Leather Sneakers

Five years on from its arrival in the world of fashion, Italian sneaker brand P448 is making a bigger push into the global arena after showing at Pitti Immagine Uomo and now showcasing a small capsule of footwear that incorporates recycled leather.

P448 said last year’s turnover of €8 million ($9 million) represents a 40 percent revenue increase versus the 12 months prior. It hopes to eclipse its 2019 goal of €12 million ($13.4 million) by reaching the “challenging but realistic objective” of €50 million ($56 million) by 2023, aided in part by growing its current 1,000+ distribution doors with an expansion to new markets.

Currently active in Italy, much of the European Union and the U.S., P448 said it’s eyeing markets farther afield, from Russia, Eastern Europe, Scandinavia and Middle East to Korea and Japan, “then aiming for a greater penetration in China.” For now it’s rejiggering its European distributors network as it did in France and Germany to gain greater control over its brand.

On the heels of successful pop-up shops hosted in London, Milan and New York City, P448 revealed plans to put down permanent roots in SoHo and in Milan’s upscale Via Montenapoleone shopping district next year.

Describing the brand’s journey as “incredible,” P448 non-executive chairman Wayne Kulkin said, “In five years P448 has gone from an Italian centric streetwear brand to being recognized as an upcoming global brand that is specialized in Italian craftsmanship and has a unique design culture inspired by music, art and streetwear fashion with a laser focus on fashion and comfort.

“We look forward [to] our next steps with an e-commerce expansion as well as mono brand stores and creating a unique experience to our multi brand customers,” he added.

P448 also designed a “mini capsule” of four unisex sneaker styles to tread lightly on the environment, use fewer chemicals and generate less waste. Each shoe incorporates at least 50 percent recycled leather, part of P448’s goal of “making leather evolve.”

With so many initiatives in the works, CEO Paolo Griffo made it clear that 2019 is a “critical year” for the street-inspired footwear brand. “Important financial investments are being made in all areas of operation, marketing and product development with the goal to continue a solid foundation of sustainable growth and, above all, having a great deal of fun in doing it,” he concluded.