Giovanni Berardi started his business at Prato, Tuscany, in 1869 before relocating to Florence. Producing high quality furniture in a varied range of styles Berardi received commissions from the most important families of Florence. For example, the Malenchini family purchased numerous items for the restoration of their Palazzo Malenchini Alberti in Florence and for their country estate, the Villa Malenchini. Of this prestigious commission a journalist recorded 'a painted wood suite of lounge furniture, characterised by quality and originality [and] a monumental gilt-wood seat covered with broccato'. Renamed Giovanni Berardi ed Eredi (and Sons) around 1880, the firm went on to exhibit at the international fair of Turin in 1898.