To stay on trend, Italian fashion houses are refashioning themselves for future growth.

The Milan Fashion Week devoted to fall and winter menswear opens on Friday with Ermenegildo Zegna’s preview. The company made its first move to expand abroad with the Zegna Group’s summer acquisition of American brand Thom Browne. The Gianni Versace fashion house’s entrance into the group owned by American designer Michael Kors was finalized last week.

The merger-and-acquisition trend in fashion offers sources of cash and footholds in new markets to brands that want to gain the scale for an international expansion, especially if their target is the tricky Asian market.

For Italy’s family-run fashion brands, generational change makes a future path especially important.

FILE - In this Sept. 23, 2017 file photo designer Angela Missoni acknowledges applauses at the end of the Missoni women's Spring/Summer 2018/19 fashion collection, presented in Milan. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
FILE – In this Sept. 23, 2017 file photo designer Angela Missoni acknowledges applauses at the end of the Missoni women’s Spring/Summer 2018/19 fashion collection, presented in Milan. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
FILE-  In this Friday, June 15, 2018 file photo, a model wears a creation part of the Ermenegildo Zegna men's Spring-Summer 2019 collection, that was presented in Milan, Italy. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno, File)
FILE- In this Friday, June 15, 2018 file photo, a model wears a creation part of the Ermenegildo Zegna men’s Spring-Summer 2019 collection, that was presented in Milan, Italy. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno, File)