In the Caudina Valley, the Cangiano family is now in its fourth generation of footwear production
Nestled in the verdant hills of the Caudina Valley, where four of the five provinces of the Campania region converge, lies a small town with just over a thousand inhabitants and whose origins pre-date the Roman Empire. This is where the Cangiano family pursues a footwear tradition developed around artisan skills passed down from father to son, without ever shunning innovation.
This story begins before the Second World War with Domenico Cangiano, in his very own workshop. Times were tough, but he still found a way to keep going and teach his sons the trade: they all learned to make shoes from a tender age.
In 1943 the first brick of what was to become the New Madison shoe factory was laid.
As he specialised in the production of men’s footwear, Domenico passed all the techniques and secrets on to his sons, including the most complex ones.
In the early 50s the small family-run business was structured and turned into a veritable shoe manufacturer. In the 60s and 70s production continued to grow and reference markets expanded. Generoso, Domenico’s son, was at the helm of the company and in turn married Annamaria Crisci, also from a family of footwear artisans. With their family and sons, raised amidst the aromas of hides and leathers, the tradition continued.
The young Cangiano brothers first entered the company in 2008 and have since guided their family’s business. Until then the company had worked above all for the private label market, producing footwear for Italian and foreign brands; however, with the arrival of the new generation, New Madison began developing its very own brand. Drawing inspiration from their origins and family, they called it nothing other than Cangiano.
A women’s range soon came to feature alongside traditional men’s shoes, made using the same techniques and sense of style.
Today New Madison is still a small shoe manufacturer, focused on great care that goes into every single item produced.
All production takes place at the company: each model is developed and made by master cobblers in accordance with ancient Italian production techniques, each of them focused on a single phase of the process.
«Leather is hand cut. Every single shoe is left on the tree for 24 hours, just like in the olden days, and we use some of the most complex construction techniques: Blake Rapid, Goodyear and Bologna construction», Cristina Cangiano explains as she tells us more about their shoe making story.
Although essentially a family-run business, New Madison is a shoe manufacturer that is investing extensively in trade fair events. Soon it will make its e-commerce début and has eagerly set its sights on the digital world.
«The first step was MICAM Milano Digital Show. A first, not just for us but for our customers too. Until now Italy has been lagging behind in terms of digitalisation, but we hope to catch up soon», Cristina Cangiano admits.