About us: The roots of the future in 120 years of history

Source: "Italia Più" magazine page 20 and 21 - 25 March 2019


CPL CONCORDIA celebrates an important birthday and continues its commitment to energy activities

On April 23rd, CPL CONCORDIA, the historic Modena cooperative group that deals with energy and plants, will celebrate its birthday. 120 years, considering that the company has its roots at the end of the nineteenth century in the Emilian town of Concordia sulla Secchia and is now designing its entrepreneurial future throughout Italy and abroad. We talk about it with Paolo Barbieri, elected at last June's assembly as president of the cooperative with the vote of over 430 working members.

Q: President Barbieri, with 120 years on your shoulders, do you feel older or younger?

A: This is certainly an important milestone, because there are not many Italian companies that can boast of our longevity. So we feel proud of our centuries-old experience, half of which is spent on the energy activities that we still carry out today. A wealth of knowledge and know-how, recognized by the market, which has been passed on to us with commitment and sacrifice by those who came before us. But we also feel the strength and enthusiasm typical of young people who, in the face of economic and technological changes, accept the challenge of doing business together, cooperating and innovating.

Q: By the way, there is a lot of talk about Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things, digitalization: what is your point of view?

A: As a board of directors, in harmony with the general management led by Pierluigi Capelli, we have placed the innovation of IT processes and systems at the center of CPL's strategic development. So we can make efficient not only our business organization, but also the Services we offer to our stakeholders: AI Supplier Qualifications From workflows to financial dashboards, through electronic invoicing and optical documental archivingand - the latter are services that we already offer in outsourcing to customers - every business process will be transformed by new technological and IT resources. These are some of the fundamental roots for the future.

Q: You talked about customers: what areas of energy is CPL focusing on?

A: Our company is proving to be a leader in heat management and global service, construction and maintenance of gas, water, public lighting and renewable energy plants and networks, which are our historic "core business". In the last year, we have finalized multi-year contracts with leading national gas operators, but we have also received important assignments from Costa Edutainment for the Aquarium of Genoa (trigeneration), Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Auditorium di Roma (Global Service). Alongside this, among the guidelines for the next three years is the intention to increase proposals for the private market, particularly in the cogeneration, biomethane and energy efficiency sectors. We also have interesting prospects in the promotion of LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) in which we have been present since 2013 with several plants built.

Q: One of the slogans chosen for the 120th anniversary is "Together for work": how are you dealing with the employment issue?

A: For the past three years, the cooperative has been committed to safeguarding jobs at a difficult stage in the life of the company. We are now in the midst of a relaunch and, thanks to the 180 hires in 2018, we have returned to pre-crisis employment levels. Also in 2019 the trend is expected to grow, up to over 1500 current employees, positively influenced by the acquisition of new contracts and orders throughout Italy. Because of our history and our sensitivity, we are well aware that guaranteeing a "real" job, i.e. a safe, regulated and fairly paid job, is now a tangible asset of the choices of a company, whether public or private. The implementation of corporate welfare and the encouragement of work-life balance and smart working practices go in the same direction. We will also tell this in the next social sustainability report that we will present in the autumn with a "tour" of CPL's Italian offices.

Q: Going back to the celebrations for the 120th anniversary, what do you have planned?

A: There will be various moments, distributed throughout the year, which will see the protagonists from time to time the institutions with which the cooperative engages on the Themes of the work andinnovation, the the business world and the territories in which CPL has developed, starting with schools, which are the natural pool of tomorrow's workers. In 1899 our great-grandparents were working with shovel and wheelbarrow; Today our work is more complex and technological, "more of the head than of the arms", let's put it this way: but it always takes the same heart to complete it in a workmanlike manner and together.

Link from the web portal of the periodical "Italia Più" March 2019 issue: The roots of the future in 120 years of history.