Four Maniago Makers Join Forces for New Mikita Network

Fox Knives, Lionsteel, Mercury, and Viper have come together to create Mikita (Maniago Innovation Knife ITAly), a network of Maniago-based knife makers. Mikita aims to leverage the combined abilities of these four companies to create lines of production knives that look forward while honoring the hundreds of years of cutlery tradition in Maniago.

Mikita provides an opportunity for four of modern Maniago’s knifemaking heavyweights to consolidate their resources and abilities. “[They] boast 200 years of knife making history and count about 100 employees,” says Gianni Pauletta, President of Mikita. “Together, they can pool their skills and experience.” All four makers have individual reputations for quality, and are each known for certain things. This conglomerated focus brings impressive advantages across the board, but provides space for company-specific talents to shine as well. “These companies can work as one structured industrial business, capable of optimizing production, marketing and promotional work, while keeping their individual specialist skills and artisan callings,” Pauletta explains.

Mikita will branch out into multiple lines of knives and projects. Pauletta tells us that we can expect entries in numerous categories including sporting, outdoor, and tactical knives – all benefiting from the high tech flair associated with Maniago. We’ve already had our first taste of the Mikita concept in the MKM brand. MKM is a separate entity from Mikita, but functioned as a kind of proof of concept for the network. “[It] is an association, a local consortium, that gathers different companies from Maniago, all blade producers but in different sectors such as kitchen tools, agricultural tools, corkscrews etc.,” Pauletta explains. Mikita promoted the initial four MKM designs during their release, one produced by each company: the Fox Arvensis, Lionsteel Clap, Mercury Fara, and Viper Raut. Pauletta says that MKM will continue to grow too even as Mikita pursues other projects as well. “There will be a new sporting knives line in 2019, then the MKM brand will present some new products in different branches such as kitchen knives and agricultural tools,” Pauletta says.

Historically, Mikita and MKM hearken to the rich connection between Maniago and bladesmithing. Located just 70 miles from Venice, the city was a primary manufacturer of weapons for that Republic in the 16th century. Water power from the nearby mountains helped power the first pre-industrial“power hammers” as well. “Here there are more than 150 production companies cooperating from the raw materials purchasing operations to the product innovation activities,” Pauletta says. “Mikita is already working on new designs and new products in order to be ready to present innovative knives soon.”

Knife featured in image: (Clockwise from top left) MKM Arvensis, Fara, Clap, and Raut