On Thursday, June 29, 2023 the presentation of the sustainability report for the year 2022 was held at the headquarters of the Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta. For the third time in a row, and with an eye already on 2026 when it will celebrate 500 years in business, the Italian company wanted to share with a large delegation of journalists the results and prospects of the careful management of resources with which Beretta is preparing to celebrate its first five hundred years of activity.
But let's start with the financial data of Beretta Armi: we have already given you all the details in a recent article analyzing the holding company's performance. Now let's focus on the Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta in Gardone Val Trompia. In 2022, the company's global turnover reached a record 317 million euros, with a further record of 21 million in the civilian sector in Italy. The 2023 trend shows further improvement over the previous year, with 4 million brought in by Ammotec.
The 2022 Sustainability Report was introduced by Franco Gussalli Beretta, Executive Vice President, who immediately presented the new corporate structures. Carlo Ferlito now serves as CEO, a role he shares with Franco Gussalli Beretta, as well as General Manager of the Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta.
The President of Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta S.p.A, Franco Gussalli Beretta opened the meeting by explaining to those present the meaning of the sustainability report: "In our family, for generations, we have always been taught that to be entrepreneurs you must always look to the future, thus being able to seize opportunities by being ahead of the times. This sustainability report, the third one published by the Company, is an example of this: we have developed and filed it – even if not legally required – because we consider it an essential tool for our business. It seems as clear as ever when looking at the famous 3Ps (People, Planet and Prosperity) that, as far as People and Planet are concerned, only by investing in human capital and environmental transition we can meet the challenges of the market and therefore achieve the third P, Prosperity. Our family has been investing resources in this direction for generations; today my brother and I are more convinced than ever that this is the way to go. And speaking of caring for people, this year, in addition to all the new additions, the company is strengthened with a very important promotion: engineer Carlo Ferlito, who has been with the company for 25 years, has taken on the position of CEO in addition to his existing position of General Manager: an award that is the result of his loyalty and management skills given the exceptional goal of the record balance sheet achieved in 2022."
Record sales for Beretta in 2022: Italy confirmed to be a growing market - more than 12 mio euro investments
Beretta also took the opportunity to update its 2022 budget figures, confirming a record turnover exceeding 317 million euros thanks to +50 percent in the main European markets and the 21 million achieved in the Italian market.
"With 12 million investments allocated in 2022, including 8.6 million in industrial machinery and 2.5 million in digital projects, the Company continues to make progress to make the Company and the Italian firearms production chain increasingly competitive in the world. As for the current year, 9.7 million investments have already been committed, including 8.6 million for new industrial machinery and equipment for new products and 1.1 million in research and development projects. Also in the first half of 2023, we record a 7 percent increase in turnover, compared to the same period last year. But a slowdown is expected for the second half of the year, both in European and American markets."
Carlo Ferlito, former General Manager of the company and, since May 1st, also CEO (a role shared with Franco Gussalli Beretta) said, "We are coming from a particularly positive period, but the new restrictive monetary and economic policies anticipate a slowdown in the market. In these moments there must be a strong community of purpose between business, management and politics. Many steps have been taken with a view to protecting supply chains, and we hope that investments will be further enhanced to protect the competitiveness of our industry. This issue is particularly felt because competition is becoming very fierce especially from those countries with low labor cost that overuse very aggressive policies to the point of attacking our Company's intellectual property. Thanks also to the strength of Beretta Holding, of which we are part, we can reach all markets in the world and make synergies with other products within the group. Our international capability is a core value that differentiates us."
An important recognition also from the Lombardy Region: Digitalization is a key factor for future sucess of Beretta
In this regard, the Italian Region of Lombardy has granted Beretta and its suppliers the status of "Sporting Firearms Supply Chain" to strengthen partnerships with suppliers and access calls for tenders aimed at production chains. With a funding plan of 30 million and expectation of further allocations, the aim is to digitize processes, improve cybersecurity, and boost sustainability initiatives, personnel development, and logistics integration. 400,000 euro non-repayable have already been awarded for the project to adopt Cloud Computing, digitize processes and invest in Cyber Security.
Innovation, supported since 2022 by the Innovation Board, continues to focus on themes such as Digital Twin, Servitization, Habitat, Experience, and Training systems. These investments are also directed at increasing competitive advantage over emerging markets and gun industries.
As Carlo Gussalli Beretta, Digital Innovation Project Manager, explains, "This commitment to increasing the company's competitiveness would be in vain without the contribution of all the men and women in the company who put themselves out there every day and try to push themselves beyond the goals they have already achieved. This is why the well-being of people and the environment around them have always been ingrained in my family and in the company's work, which continues to introduce new initiatives to foster the environmental and personal well-being of its employees."
The well-being of people and the environment as Beretta's first goals
Also continuing are initiatives focused on safety and health, supported by public safety and environmental audits, health surveillance, preventive screening of employees for metabolic and oncological diseases, and 2,200 hours of training courses. Also of note is the Be People Project developed in collaboration with criminologist Cinzia Mammoliti, which aims to combat violence within families, both verbal and physical, particularly against women. Other programs deal with providing employees with tools and techniques to better manage family resources.
Another initiative that is proving successful is the activation of the new carpooling service between home and work which, in collaboration with the JOJOB platform which aims to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, as well as decrease pressure on traffic and available parking spaces. Data from the first three weeks of activation are encouraging, with savings of 400 kg of CO2, corresponding to about 400 trips.
Commitment to a sustainable future, under the umbrella of BE Planet initiatives, continues to follow the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030. Waste generation (as a ratio of kilograms of firearms produced) has been reduced by 4 percent for hazardous and 17 percent for non-hazardous waste, while also reducing use of chemical by 9 percent.
The realization of projects started in 2022 includes experiments to eliminate chromium plating from the manufacturing of gun barrels in favor of a green, safe and effective process, thanks to the arrival of new machinery. Areas contaminated with hexavalent chromium have already been closed to make way for soil excavation and disposal operations.
Important focus is on clean energy, with the expansion of the photovoltaic system, entrusted to the Torri Solare company. The 2,400 square meters of solar panels already installed in 2022, totaling 157 kW, have been expanded with another 1,900 square meters that add 400 kW thanks to higher efficiency.
The focus on digital transformation, both industrial and in customer relations and in the daily lives of employees, remains as high as ever. The third edition of the Digital Olympics, carried out in partnership with Key2People, aimed to develop digital skills and culture among Beretta employees in alignment with the evolution of the technological scenario inside and outside the company. Each employee, followed by a Digital Champions, was thus able to delve into issues related to the new digital mutations and acquire new knowledge in this regard.
The younger generation and training remain a key element in ensuring the continuity of know-how within the arms industry. In fact, the average age of the 57 new hires is 31 for blue-collar workers and 29.5 for white-collar workers, with a female component of 19 percent of white-collar and 14 percent of blue-collar workers. The Voice of employees digital system based on artificial intelligence allows top management to receive anonymous feedback from employees on any aspect of life in the company.
Finally, the "estivini" initiative, which brought 31 young people from educational institutions into the company for summer work, continues also this year.
In conclusion, Beretta Armi demonstrates again this year that it believes to the core that digital is the backbone of the company, as it enables it to optimize every single aspect of production and the environment. The data are currently proving them right. The energy balance shows how possible it is to coexist with high-level manufacturing production, which uses large amounts of energy and raw materials, without sacrificing respect for the environment and the health of employees. In doing this, Beretta is certainly an example for the entire industrial sector.
The new Sustainability Report 2022 is available on Beretta's website at this link: https://www.beretta.com/it-it/azienda/sostenibilita/ambiente.