Luxury goods maker, Gucci Group NV, has agreed to acquire a 70 per cent interest in the footwear firm, Calzaturificio Regain.

Regain is one of Italy's top men's footwear companies, producing over 70,000 pairs of shoes a year.

Gucci and Regain plan to set up a state-of-the-art men's shoes modelling and prototyping business.

A Gucci spokesman said: "This acquisition is an important step in the Gucci Group's strategy to build its already strong and profitable presence in the footwear business."

In the fiscal year 2000, Gucci Group's revenues in this category were over $240m, approximately 11 per cent of total sales.

Details of the financial terms of the acquisition have not been revealed. The deal is expected to be completed in September.

It is the second acquisition revealed by the company this week. On Monday, Gucci revealed it had acquired a 51 per cent stake in the Italian tannery, Caravel Pelli Pregiate.

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