Alessandro Giuseppe Borsalino
Gallo and Monticone families
The Borsalino hat factory was established in 1857 in Alessandria by Giuseppe Borsalino (1834-1900) and was managed after his death by his son Teresio (1867-1939).
In 1871 Borsalino boasted 130 employees and a daily production of 300 hats. Giuseppe Borsalino, learning from the English, decided to make the industrial shift and import machines which had already revolutionized the work of hat makers in Denton, Stockport and the suburbs of Manchester. Borsalino was transformed from an artisan adventure to an industry.
In 1880 the company embarked on the enterprising road of exportation. A few decades later, 60% of production was allocated for export.
In 1990 Giuseppe Borsalino died and his son Teresio took over the company. He immediately proved his ability by increasing production form 2,800 hats a day in 1901 to 4,000 in 1906. Production was further increased to 5,500 in 1909 and reached a record figure in the 1920’s of 2 million a year.
In 1911 Borsalino began collaboration with Marcello Dudovich. It was to become a landmark in the history of advertising posters. In the following years some of the most remarkable publicity illustrations of the time were produced for Borsalino.
In 1970 the film “Borsalino” was released with Alain Delon and Jean Paul Belmondo and was a box office hit. In 1973 it was followed by the sequel “Borsalino & Co”. The two French actors were once again the leading men. These two films marked the revival of the Borsalino brand among new generations.
On 20th December 1979 Teresio Usuelli, last heir of the Borsalino family, left the company, leaving his role of president to Vittorio Vaccarino.
During the 1980s the company was completely restructured and began to manufacture a clothing line.
In the early nineties Borsalino was purchased by the Gallo and Monticone families, industrialists from the nearby city of Asti. The company took on a new impetus, above all in the field of exports, which had historically been its strong point.
In 1997, having always had ambitions to expand, Borsalino acquired Sabino D’Oria and sons of Lecce: an historical company which specialized in the processing of hats in fabric and leather. This acquisition resulted in the creation of “Borsalino Sud”.
In 1998 the growing demand of the American and Caribbean markets resulted in the company setting up “Borselino America Inc.”
In 1999 Borsalino decided to enter the Oriental market and opened a factory in Zhangpu, China: “Borsalino Orient” specializes in the production of Private Label hats.
From 1999 to 2004 Borsalino developed considerably, both nationally and internationally, bringing the company to an important shift in its economic and business strategies: the launch of a Men’s clothes collection, characterized by the unmistakable style, class and elegance of Borsalino.
In July 2007, in order to best satisfy the Asian market, Borsalino Japan was born.
Today Borsalino, in addition to being present in the most elegant boutiques and best department stores in the world ( Bergdorf & Goodman, Barney’s, Neiman Marcus, Sacks Fifth Avenue, Harrod’s, Galleries Lafayette, Printemps, Bon Marché, Isetan, etc.) boasts fifteen single brand sales points in Italy, one in France (Paris).