Export vocation in a competitive region, that's how Chrysler arrived at Vm in 2000


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Founded in 1947 by two entrepreneurs from Cento, Claudio Vancini and Ugo Martelli, Vm motori, specialised in the design and construction of diesel engines, has since 2000 been a member of the Daimler Chrysler group, one of the biggest American brands with which the firm had been collaborating for a long time.

The company’s production, initially intended for agricultural, marine and industrial sectors, reached a turning point in 1990 with the creation of Turbotronic, a diesel engine which, with electronic control of the combustion process and recirculation of the exhaust gases, was able to provide cutting edge performances in terms of both power and the reduction of exhaust gases. Since then Vm have turned their attention to the automobile market, working with groups such as Ford, General Motors and Chrysler. At present Vm have a production capacity of 100 thousand engines a year in an area of 85 thousand square metres, with a staff of almost 1300 employees. In October 2000 the firm became a member of the Daimler Chrysler group, which holds 49% of the company, while the remaining 51% went to the United States group led by Roger Penske (specialised in logistics and transports), who has also been chairman of the Italian company since 1995.
The reasons why important foreign firms decided to invest their capital in the Cento company are explained by Vilmo Ferioli, deputy chairman and managing director of Vm: “For many years now, with our export quota of 75%, Vm have been looking towards foreign markets with great attention, investing with conviction in research and innovation. Moreover it must not be forgotten that we are in a region which, despite the limited competitiveness of the Italian system, continues, from the economic point of view, to have a staying capacity superior to the national average. These two synergic components have apparently offered guarantees to foreign investors.”

Another aspect to which Vm give great importance is Research & Development, in which they invest 7% of their turnover. “If this spirit could become more systematic throughout the region,” concludes Ferioli, “foreign investors cannot fail to increase".

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