Tenneco-Marzocchi, a major player serving the automotive and motorcycle industries


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Bologna, 12 December 2008 – 14 years of courtship and 14 months of negotiations before the big day: on 1 September 2008 Tenneco, US-based world leader in emissions and ride control systems for the automotive sector, completed the acquisition of the suspensions division of Marzocchi, the Bolognese group with 60 years of specialist experience in the manufacture of suspension systems for motorcycles and mountain bikes. The result is the creation of a colossus in terms of unique experience and know-how: Tenneco (based in Lake Forest, Illinois), with annual sales in the order of US$6.2 billion, and 21 thousand employees worldwide, is one of the world's top designers and distributors of shock absorbers, suspension components, exhaust systems and catalysers for the original equipment market and the aftermarket. Marzocchi, with annual turnover of around €50 million, is a supplier to many prestigious manufacturers including BMW, Ducati, Harley Davidson, MV Agusta and the Piaggio group.

What made Tenneco choose Marzocchi? In the words of Marzocchi's president Paolo Marzocchi. "First of all there's our prestigious brand image, associated with high-end products addressed to young enthusiasts seeking top performance in off-road cycling and all-round motorcycle riding. Tenneco was vying to extend its field of operations, securing customers also in the principal mountain biking age group". By acquiring Marzocchi's suspension division the US giant can "reach out to mountain bikers and motorcycle enthusiasts, while Monroe, the other prestigious suspension brand owned by the US group, ensures excellent penetration among motorists".
Not just suspension systems: the collaboration resulting from the acquisition allows the company to offer its customers – primarily in the motorcycles sector – an integrated product range from suspension systems to exhausts and catalysers.

Incorporated in 1949, the Italian company, based in the Zola Predosa district of Bologna, immediately started manufacturing motorcycle suspension systems, liaising with top riders from the World Motorcycle GP and the Dakar rally, and subsequently turned to address the needs also of automakers by manufacturing master cylinders for several prestigious marques, including Ferrari and Lamborghini. In the late 80s the Bologna company embarked on the development of a range of products for the mountain bike sector, in line with the tenets of a new mission: to bring motorcycle sector technology and manufacturing processes to the world of bicycles.
Chief sales and marketing executive Andrea Pierantoni explains that, with the integration with Tenneco, which will continue to manufacture products for the motorcycles sector at the Bologna plant, Marzocchi "increases its market penetration capacity, thanks to the group's extensive sales and service network, especially in countries in which we previously lacked an official distributor".

 

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