Thibaut buys the Italian textile and furniture brand Coraggio
New Jersey-based fabric, wallcovering and furniture brand Thibaut acquired Italian textile company Coraggio in a deal that closed on July 13. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
According to the CEO of Thibaut Rick Kilmer, the two brands began talks about a possible acquisition late last year. For Kilmer, who was formerly president of Holly Hunt and held executive positions for brands such as Kohler and Janus and Co., the company occupied a familiar segment of the design community, with a product portfolio and customer base that offered an ideal opportunity for Thibaut.
“Coraggio has always been a brand with such a formidable heritage and such a discriminating palette and customer base,” says Kilmer. “[Coraggio CEO Robert Albert] is an amazing founder and so passionate about the business. It was too good an opportunity to pass up.
Founded in 1886, Thibaut considers itself the oldest continuously operating wallpaper company in the country, but that longevity hasn’t stopped the brand from adapting to an ever-changing industry. The company re-established a network of showrooms after the 2019 bankruptcy of Robert Allen Duralee, where it was represented in eight markets. In recent years, the company has also introduced online ordering for creators, explored shopping features on Instagram, and hired a digital transformation director to oversee brand IT and improve operational efficiency. Coraggio’s acquisition also comes just months after Thibaut himself was acquired by Minneapolis-based private equity firm Norwest Equity Partners in late 2021.
Although Coraggio’s history doesn’t go that far back, it has grown into a formidable design brand since 25-year-old Albert founded the company in 1979. Today, Coraggio produces textiles, furniture , lighting, rugs, fine art and accessories and operates 11 different showrooms in cities including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta. Following the acquisition, the two entities will operate largely independently with their current go-to-market approaches; any necessary changes will be discussed at Thibaut’s strategic planning meetings later in the year.
Albert, who will remain a consultant during the transition period, announced the new house of the brand he founded. “Thibaut has earned a reputation for his compelling designs, superior product quality and collaborative service approach with the interior design community,” he said in a statement. “Partnering with a company like Thibaut and his management team gives me great excitement for the future of Coraggio and the continued legacy of the brand we created over 40 years ago.”
A top priority after the acquisition will be moving the brand’s extensive product offerings to Thibaut’s new facility in Charlotte, where the New Jersey-based company recently moved its entire inventory to leverage better operating measures and shipping conditions. Beyond that, Kilmer says, the company plans to honor Coraggio’s portfolio and maintain its commitment to designers by “building a moat” around the high level of service and quality the company has provided so far. present to professional customers.
“Opportunities like this don’t come along often – great heritage and a great brand, all wrapped up in a terrific assortment of products,” says Kilmer. “There aren’t many of them still around, so we’re all excited about the future.”
Home page image: Inside Thibaut’s New York showroom | Courtesy of Thibaut