Leonardo’s 70 birthday candles in 2018 represent the Company’s 70 years as a key player in Italy’s industrial history. As Finmeccanica’s successor, Leonardo celebrates the founding of Società Finanziaria Meccanica Finmeccanica on 18 March 1948, established to manage IRI’s (Istituto per la Ricostruzione Industriale – Italian Institute for Industrial Reconstruction) holdings in the mechanical and shipbuilding industries.
This is indeed a significant anniversary: celebrating the glorious past of a large Group that takes pride in representing one of the most outstanding and exciting Italian legacies, and also propelling the Company into the future through a new transformation phase that began in January 2018 with the 2018-2022 Industrial Plan’s launch.
Leonardo’s story represents the step-by-step creation of an extraordinary heritage of skills, abilities and technologies that enabled it, throughout the years, to assume an international dimension, becoming in the present day one of the top ten global Companies in the Aerospace, Defence and Security sectors. This is a story built upon people, based on their technological, industrial and professional know-how that was fundamental to face – in a highly competitive sector, always on the frontier of innovation – years of challenges, changes and evolution.
The Company’s industrial legacy dates back to well before its official establishment. Some of the companies that over time have merged into the Group were actually established in the previous century. After 1948, following an initial phase of rationalisation of the shipbuilding business, the Company concentrated on the automotive, thermoelectric and aerospace sectors. Then, began a radical repositioning of the Company, which recovered the electronics companies from STET, and Agusta and the companies operating in defence from EFIM , thereby becoming the sector’s principal Italian player.
2000 was the year of privatisation and international expansion. In fact, a phase of establishing joint ventures and acquisitions in foreign markets began, in particular in the UK, US and France. In 2016, Finmeccanica officially became One Company and changed its name to Leonardo. The Holding Company integrated the activities of its subsidiaries (AgustaWestland, Alenia Aermacchi, Selex ES, OTO Melara, WASS) and became a single industrial entity.
Celebrations for the 70th anniversary will involve a series of special initiatives and events throughout the year. This is an opportunity for Leonardo to rediscover the founding values of its legacy, which will be crucial to approach the future with increased momentum and to compete successfully in global markets.