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A company tale

The story of Calabrian company Callipo may not be a management textbook, but there’s much to be learned

Every company has a history, a tale waiting to be told. And when a tale is beautiful, interesting and full of potentially valuable lessons, then it’s a tale that deserves to be told. That is precisely the case of Callipo, a tuna supply company (among other things) based in Pizzo, Calabria, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013. The company’s story has recently been told through a blend of words and images in Gianfranco Manfredi’s book Callipo dal 1913.
The story of Callipo (now called Giacinto Callipo Conserve Alimentari) dates back to 1913, when its founder, Giacinto, started a Mediterranean tuna fish processing and canning operation, Calabria’s first and one of the first in Italy. Now part of a diverse group comprising six subsidiaries, the company is still led by one of Giacinto’s descendants, Filippo Callippo, along with his children. Over the course of a century, five generations of business people have worked hard to reconcile traditions with increasingly competitive market dynamics, creating a brand that has established itself as one of the “noble faces” of Southern Italy.
Through a combination of words and images, the book traces the company’s progress, revealing the close bond between a family – the Callipos – and its business, and between a business and its employees. Vintage photos and documents are the foundation for Manfredi’s volume, which is neither a handbook on business administration nor a family history. “Instead, Callipo dal 1913 is a little bit of both. It is a book that offers valuable lessons on how to run a manufacturing business, with some fascinating insight into a complicated land and a complicated sector (respectively Calabria and the food industry) which nevertheless deserve our attention.
The book’s editor provides an effective synopsis: “More than a mere company history, this is a tale of values, vision and know-how. It’s the story of an organisation firmly rooted in its territory, which above all else values people, community and quality.” Good Italian business therefore, means good business culture.

Callipo dal 1913
Gianfranco Manfredi
Rubbettino, 2019

The story of Calabrian company Callipo may not be a management textbook, but there’s much to be learned

Every company has a history, a tale waiting to be told. And when a tale is beautiful, interesting and full of potentially valuable lessons, then it’s a tale that deserves to be told. That is precisely the case of Callipo, a tuna supply company (among other things) based in Pizzo, Calabria, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013. The company’s story has recently been told through a blend of words and images in Gianfranco Manfredi’s book Callipo dal 1913.
The story of Callipo (now called Giacinto Callipo Conserve Alimentari) dates back to 1913, when its founder, Giacinto, started a Mediterranean tuna fish processing and canning operation, Calabria’s first and one of the first in Italy. Now part of a diverse group comprising six subsidiaries, the company is still led by one of Giacinto’s descendants, Filippo Callippo, along with his children. Over the course of a century, five generations of business people have worked hard to reconcile traditions with increasingly competitive market dynamics, creating a brand that has established itself as one of the “noble faces” of Southern Italy.
Through a combination of words and images, the book traces the company’s progress, revealing the close bond between a family – the Callipos – and its business, and between a business and its employees. Vintage photos and documents are the foundation for Manfredi’s volume, which is neither a handbook on business administration nor a family history. “Instead, Callipo dal 1913 is a little bit of both. It is a book that offers valuable lessons on how to run a manufacturing business, with some fascinating insight into a complicated land and a complicated sector (respectively Calabria and the food industry) which nevertheless deserve our attention.
The book’s editor provides an effective synopsis: “More than a mere company history, this is a tale of values, vision and know-how. It’s the story of an organisation firmly rooted in its territory, which above all else values people, community and quality.” Good Italian business therefore, means good business culture.

Callipo dal 1913
Gianfranco Manfredi
Rubbettino, 2019