Patrizia Pepe: Unconventional Innovation and Integration in Fashion Supply Chain

  • Paola SignoriEmail author
  • Simone Guercini
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Practice: Global Fashion Brand Management book series (PSP:GFBM)


Tessilform is an Italian medium-sized enterprise producing clothing, footwear, bags, and accessories for young women, men, and girls under the brand Patrizia Pepe, and can be considered one of best practices for its positive financial performance, attained through a unique proactive and reactive intelligence system for approaching innovation with an obsession with details. Tessilform company is an organization permeated by creative thinking that could be defined as a thinking organization. Its dynamic hybrid business model is a flexible lean and agile integrated system. Fast and flexible capabilities infuse its entire supply chain, with a joint focus on continuous supply chain process innovation, to deliver high-quality products and customer service levels. The supply chain collaboration in trying and experimenting new solutions enables the fast adoption of new technologies together with its supply chain partners. This approach to process innovation, called collaborative experimentation, drives to a more flexible supply chain that easily reacts to change and is able to quickly respond to new trends and market challenges. Patrizia Pepe’s case study explains “unconventional” innovation as composed by three dimensions: being a thinking organization; evolving an integrated system as business model; and continuously innovating processes, including collaborative experimentation with supply chain partners. In this chapter, we review this case story and vision, supported by the leaders’ words to discover the real roots of their particular “unconventional” innovation approach that drives their success.


Process innovation Agile integrated system Collaborative experimentation Flexible supply chain Customer experience 


  1. A Giglio Group il 100% di Evolve, controllata da Tessilform (Patrizia Pepe). Al via ibox. (2017, February 15). Fashion Retrieved from
  2. About. (2018). Inside Patrizia Pepe. Patrizia Pepe official blog. [blog post] Retrieved from
  3. Aida Bureau Van Dijk. (2018). Tessilform Spa [data file]. Retrieved from
  4. Capoferro. P. (2015, January 21). Patrizia Pepe: l’arte di estendere il digitale dal back-end al negozio. Internet 4 Things. Retrieved from
  5. Choi, T. M. (2011). Fashion supply chain management: Industry and business analysis., Hong Kong: IGI Global.Google Scholar
  6. Ciappei, C., & Sani, A. (2010). Strategie di internazionalizzazione e grande distribuzione nel settore dell'abbigliamento. Firenze: Firenze University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Cietta, E. (2008). La rivoluzione del fast fashion. Strategie e modelli organizzativi per competere nelle industrie ibride: Strategie e modelli organizzativi per competere nelle industrie ibride. Milano: FrancoAngeli.Google Scholar
  8. Flint, D. J., Signori, P., & Golicic, S. L. (2018). Corporate identity congruence: A meanings-based analysis. Journal of Business Research, 86, 68–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Golizia, D. (2016). Fashion business model: strategie e modelli delle aziende di moda. Milano: Franco Angeli.Google Scholar
  10. Guercini, S. (2001). Relation between branding and growth of the firm in new quick fashion formulas: Analysis of an Italian case. Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, 5(1), 69–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Guercini, S. (2003). Il caso Patrizia Pepe Firenze. In S. Guercini. & R. Piovan. Schemi di negoziato e tecniche di comunicazione per il tessile abbigliamento (pp. 127–135). Firenze: Firenze University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Guercini, S. (2004). Developing the researcher-manager interface in the case analysis process. Management Decision, 42(3/4), 464–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Guercini, S., & Runfola A. (2009). Modelli di business. branding e relazioni di fornitura: Patrizia Pepe Firenze. In R. Varaldo, D. Dalli, R. Resciniti. & A. Tunisini (Eds.). Un tesoro emergente: le medie imprese italiane dell’era globale (pp. 528–543). Milano: Franco Angeli.Google Scholar
  14. Guercini, S., & Runfola, A. (2010). Business networks and retail internationalization: A case analysis in the fashion industry. Industrial Marketing Management, 39(6), 908–916.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hanson, L. (2017). Patrizia Pepe chooses EFI Optitex as its 2D/3D strategic partner. Efi Opitex News. Retrieved from
  16. Leonard-Barton, D. (1990). A dual methodology for case studies: Synergistic use of a longitudinal single site with replicated multiple sites. Organization Science, 1(3), 248–266.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Milgrom, P., & Roberts, J. (1988). Communication and inventory as substitutes in organizing production. The Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 90(3), 275–289.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Misani, N., & Capello, P. V. (2016). Le collezioni nella moda: La gestione dei processi dal designer al cliente. Milan: EGEA.Google Scholar
  19. Patrizia Pepe. (2018, July 12). Internal report. Tessilform Spa.Google Scholar
  20. Patrizia Pepe doubles logistics efficiency with RAIN RFID. (n.d.). Impinj. Inc. Customer Stories Library. Retrieved from
  21. Patrizia Pepe e il successo della moda facile. (2014, August 15). Retrieved from
  22. Patrizia Pepe. (n.d.). The history. Retrieved from
  23. Patrizia Pepe Firenze. (2005). Internal report. Tessilform Spa.Google Scholar
  24. Patrizia Pepe. Intervista a Claudio Orrea. (2008, June 01). Pambianco News. Retrieved from
  25. Patrizia talking with Dua Lipa. (2018). Patrizia Pepe Youtube channel [video]. Retrieved from
  26. Pieraccini, S. (2011). L’assedio cinese. Il distretto senza regole degli abiti low cost di Prato. Milano: Gruppo 24 ore.Google Scholar
  27. Redazione Tgcom24. (2018, March 07). Patrizia Pepe. Incantesimi di luce per donne che amano osare! Tgcom24. Retrieved from
  28. Runfola, A., & Guercini, S. (2013). Fast fashion companies coping with internationalization: Driving the change or changing the model?. Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, 17(2), 190–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sheridan, M., Moore, C., & Nobbs, K. (2006). Fast fashion requires fast marketing: The role of category management in fast fashion positioning. Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, 10(3), 301–315.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Signori, P., Flint, D. J., & Golicic, S. (2015). Toward sustainable supply chain orientation (SSCO): Mapping managerial perspectives. International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, 45(6), 536–564.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Stamo, A. (2014, July 25). Patrizia Pepe. Casi di successo. Infordata News. Retrieved from
  32. Tessilform – Patrizia Pepe. (2008). Casi di successo gruppo sesa. Retrieved from
  33. Tessilform Company Card. (2018, June 29). Visure camerali web. CCIAA. 1–217.Google Scholar
  34. Tessilform Spa. Imprese per iInnovazione. (2007). Confindustria News. Retrieved from
  35. Yin, R. K. (2017). Case study research and applications: Design and methods. LA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Business AdministrationUniversity of VeronaVeronaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Economics and ManagementUniversity of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

Personalised recommendations