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In the early 1970s two young Danes, Leif Munch Nielsen and Else Kappel Schmidt, whose sense of adventure brought them to Italy, discovered that an Italian tradition was to rely on heavy woollen blankets to keep people warm at night whilst Danes slept under a light and warm duvet filled with feathers or down.
It was a time when many Italians began to travel to European countries and experience different customs, one of which was sleeping under a duvet. They soon discovered that certain European cultures did not share a matrimonial blanket but favoured the use of a single duvet for each person. Hence they would find two neatly folded on their bed upon entering their hotel room.
Realizing there was a niche in the Italian bedding market, these two young Danes set out and created Danimarca s.n.c. di Nielsen and Schmidt in May 1975 and thus began their business of importing the lightest goose down duvets from Denmark, customized to suit the Italian climate.
The magnitude of retail trade fairs throughout Italy permitted the company to work year round and bring a taste of Denmark to as far north as Milan's Campionario and as far south as the Fiera del Mediterraneo of Palermo, all the while self-financing their venture.
Only the finest quality and prestigious filling was selected for their duvets. Contrary to setting off a price war among the few Italian feather and down producers their presence was welcomed and helped raise the quality standards.
With the opening of their shop in Milan on Corso Buenos Aires followed by one in Rome on Via Porta Pinciana, they began the launch of their marketing campaign in 1978 and have not looked back since.
In 1984 Danimarca s.n.c. di Nielsen & Schmidt founded a parent company in Denmark and created Danimarca srl Piumini Danesi® with headquarters in Via Francesco Crispi, Rome. With the onset of inferior quality Danish duvets making their way onto the markets of some Italian cities, Piumini Danesi proceeded to trademark their logo in 1992, a blue shield with red flag, to further authenticate their brand. Six years later, LM Nielsen sold his share of the company to EK Schmidt and became consultant to the firm.
In 2001 to yet again strengthen the brand name and distinguish itself from imitators, Danimarca Piumini Danesi, which literally means Denmark Danish duvets, incorporated pooq dene® to its trademark. Pooq, Greenlandic for blanket or bag and dene from the Inuit of the boreal Arctic region meaning people in Athabaskan.
Thanks to the hard work, dedication and professionalism of its staff and the continued loyalty and support of its customers, Piumini danesi® pooq dene® has been able to maintain the success of its brand over the years.
To date, the company runs 12 exclusive shops located in major cities throughout Italy and an online e-commerce that was launched in 1997 (www.piuminidanesi.com). It stands by its mission to provide products of quality and durability.
It continues to be managed by Else Kappel Schmidt from its managing office and warehouse located 28 km north-east of Rome, in Via Molette 40 – 00013 Casali di Mentana.