The excellence of a territory and of a nation is expressed through products that combine aesthetic qualities and advanced engineering: this is made-in-Italy according to Bertazzoni, which exports its cooking appliances around the world.
When Italy was a nation of just 21 years old, Antonio and Francesco Bertazzoni founded a small company that, through five generations and over 130 years of history, would have become a benchmark in the segment of high-end home appliances. Today, Bertazzoni goes on designing and producing in the headquarters at Guastalla – picturesque town located in the heart of Emilia Romagna – without any relocation. Through the brands “F.lli Bertazzoni” and “Bertazzoni La Germania”, all its products pay great attention to an informed and very demanding consumer in terms of functionality and design. Qualities that are reflected in the wide appreciation observed among the international markets: exports represent about 90 percent of the company’s turnover.
Paolo Bertazzoni, managing director of Bertazzoni Spa
Tradition and innovation: how do they live together in your mission?
These two elements, which seem antithetical, are actually well-connected in the history of Bertazzoni. The company began to produce wood and coal burning stoves for domestic use, such as those that my ancestors had seen on the trains from Germany, in 1882: for the time, it was a big news. This spirit of innovation has been handed down to the present times, characterized by ‘smart’ products, that assist the user step by step in the preparation of food, thanks to special software developed by our technicians.
Has the balance between these two components led to specific measures in terms of productive organization?
Yes. The innovation of the production process has been put beside to that of the product. In this context, since the early 2000s, we introduced the Toyota method, which now allows us to handle even the single lot productions.
How do you manage to intercept or anticipate new trends in demand?
Analyzing and interpreting the evolution of the demand itself together with the buyers: dialogue and sharing are the best tools to meet the reciprocal needs.
What tools allow you to meet the specific needs of a buyer?
Buyers need to bring certain results to their organizations: for this, we must first be perceived as reliable partners. Equally important is the ability to simplify their work through a clear and exhaustive communication. All ranges are designed to guarantee them a constant problem solving, as buyers are the best allies to introduce our products to market.
Which positioning do you intend to pursue in the future?
In this perspective, about fifteen years ago we started to remove the ranges that were no longer profitable, focusing on those with the highest added value. I think this path, which lasted consistently over time, is a reliable indicator of the positioning of our products in the high end of the market.
Are the international certifications an opportunity to reaffirm the intrinsic value of your production?
Certifications are needful to enter specific markets. On the other hand, people have little familiarity with them. It would be opportune to publicize them more effectively – as it happened with the energetic classes – to give a contribution to the consumer’s purchase decisions.
What does the expression “Made in Italy” suggest to you nowadays?
In terms of immediate perception by the user, I think that made-in-Italy is synonymous with beauty, life quality, craftsmanship. To these elements we must added the engineering, in which Italians are excellent as well. I would say, finally, that the engineering skills are the qualifying element of the typical “know-how” of our country.
What characteristics allow a national product to stand out in the global market?
An item that evokes beauty, life quality, craftsmanship and engineering is already ascribable to the great made-in-Italy family. As far as we are concerned, a further distinction can be found in its geographical origin. From this point of view, Emilia Romagna is characterized by its top-notch industry in various fields, from luxury automotive to agricultural mechanics, but also for the good food and the quality of life.
How can they represent an added value for a buyer?
Made-in-Italy makes a product easily recognizable, hence facilitating its sale. Another element to take into account is the widespread goodwill towards Italy. This positive prejudice is an advantage to be exploited, on condition that we pay it back with an avant-garde offer in terms of quality, functionality and empathy with the consumer.
Do you think it would be desirable a stronger synergy among producers to strengthen the made-in-Italy in the world?
No doubt. Collaborations involving other manufacturers can arise, but also initiatives that call into question the country system. The first way is the most promising, since it allows to plan co-marketing activities that bring benefits in terms of communication, placement and sales channels. An example of this is the project carried out by Accademia Barilla for the promotion of Italian culture and good food. Additional projects that are placed along these lines are being studied. The initiatives of the second kind, instead, make reference to the relationship with public authorities: in this sense, we can make our contribution through participation in the activities of Ceced and Confindustria.
|The story goes on
Established in Guastalla in 1882, nowadays Bertazzoni represents one of the most innovative and growing industrial and commercial realities in the sector of kitchen home appliances. Chaired since its birth by the Bertazzoni family and governed by the headquarters at Guastalla, in Emilia Romagna region, it is a successful example of family business, which today employs 250 persons and produces around 200,000 pieces per year. It is known around the world with the brands Bertazzoni and Bertazzoni La Germania, which are characterized by the high ranking of the relative ranges.
|Vision and concreteness
"Immediately after graduation, I had a brief work experience outside the family company, in which I returned permanently in 1980. Today I represent the fifth Bertazzoni generation. One of my main responsibilities is to lead it in the sixth, catching the evolutionary trends that occur in the world. The passion for reading feeds my curiosity. For this reason, I surround myself with colleagues which help me, concretely, to give shape to my vision. "