Just over a week ago the Italian shoemaker Riccardo Freccia Bestetti tragically passed away, after a period of illness (read more in this post). As always in situations like this with a small business with one clear mastermind, it was a great uncertainty about what would happen to his company. It is now clear that the brand will continue to operate.
It is Riccardo Bestetti’s wife Anna Bestetti who will step in and run the company. She will be responsible for all the administrative work, contacts with customers and retailers, and so on. In the workshop Riccardo had a few employees, where especially one of them has been there for many years. It will likely be a period where it will be a bit extra shaky with delivery times and stuff like that, before they get settled and find the new way of running business.
I’m happy that Riccardo Bestettis life’s work will continue to live on. I also believe that seen from the brand’s point of view it’s positive that so quickly after his passing it’s clear that there will be a continuation, and that as much as possible will continue as before. It will not be a long period of uncertainty, with customers and retailers leave and both that part and the production needs to start more or less from scratch when it takes off again, if it does. We saw after that the Italian colleague Stefano Bemer passed away a few years ago, that the brand was more or less on hold for a long time before it became clear how it would be a continuation. They still succeded, much thanks to strong new owner, but the risk is always greater for a small manufacturer like Bestetti to disappear if too much time had passed. Riccardo Bestetti will obviously be incredibly missed in the company that bears his name, but I’m sure he would have liked to see that his shoes were continuing to be produced, and it’s likely one of the reasons that his wife and employees choose just that.