Zago – protecting the protectors
Visiting an Italian company that plays a vital role in the injection moulding of footwear around the world.
Since its establishment in 1958, Padua-based Zago Moulds Solutions has been employing advanced technologies to make moulds for footwear producers around the world. At first, these were specifically for use with rubber, after which versions for the direct injection of polyurethane (PU) were developed when this process was introduced in the 1980s. In fact, founder Elio Zago is viewed by many as a pioneer in the use of moulds for PU.
Today, Zago Moulds Solutions has positioned itself as a key manufacturer playing an important role within the international footwear-producing industry. Twenty per cent of its products are sold in Italy, 50 per cent are purchased by shoemakers in other parts of Europe, and the remaining 30 per cent are shipped to the rest of the world.
One of the company’s most important markets is in the development and provision of moulds for footwear to be worn by members of the police, armed forces and emergency services. While safety, health and maximum comfort are key factors in any workplace, Zago recognises that these characteristics are even more important for high-risk jobs such as those dealing with security issues. This fact has led the company to design and manufacture moulds for use in the most adverse conditions experienced.
A far-reaching portfolio
Over the past 62 years, Zago moulds have been designed for a number of applications. In addition to footwear for military and emergency personnel, these include safety boots which, when employed in a professional context, must provide a high degree of foot protection for use in construction, engineering, mining and the oil industry. The company also manufacturers moulds for trekking footwear to be used on rough surfaces, casual shoes made for urban contexts with designs to enhance comfort and practicality, and footwear created for outdoor sports which focus on stability, rear cushioning, grip and water resistance. Zago moulds are said to have been tested with the highest-performance injection machines, using polyurethane (PU), rubber-PU, rubber-rubber and thermoplastic PU (TPU)-PU.
Creating the best possible footwear mould has now been the passion of two generations, with Giorgio Zago – son of the founder – currently serving as the chief executive of the company.
This article was originally published on page 11 of the September 2020 issue of SATRA Bulletin.