Title: The globalisation of an Italian family company: Zobele Chemical Industries (1919–2006)

Authors: Pier A. Abetti

Addresses: Lally School of Management and Technology, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 110, 8th Street Troy, New York 12180-3590, USA

Abstract: The case history of the Italian family company, Zobele Chemical Industries, one of the world|s leading suppliers of insect repellants and deodorants, describes the synchronous evolution of the firm and three generations of the Zobele family over 87 years, from 1919 to 2006. The Zobele Company, located in Trento, Northern Italy, was founded in 1919 by Enrico Zobele Sr., who became famous when he invented his first |killer product| in 1930 – flypaper. In 2005, Zobele Chemical Industries achieved global sales of €230 million with profits of €11 million. The company had 3300 employees, factories in Italy, Spain, Brazil, Paraguay, India, Hong Kong, Mexico, China. The case centres on the challenges faced by CEO Enrico Zobele Jr. and the family members for ensuring global leadership while maintaining the continuity of family ownership and control.

Keywords: Zobele Chemical Industries; family firms; globalisation; Italian chemical industry; Italy; insect repellants; deodorants; company history; firm development; family ownership; technology management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.2007.015756

International Journal of Technology Management, 2007 Vol.40 No.4, pp.330 - 348

Published online: 12 Nov 2007 *

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