The Pirelli group was founded in Milan in 1872 under the supervision of the young engineer Giovanni Battista Pirelli. Since the beginnings, production has specialised in rubber processing, featuring the first accomplishments on basic items such as belts, plaques and tubes.
Within a few years, its range of products was greatly expanded to products for every technical, industrial and scientific use, and further specialisations such as leading the market on pneumatic seals for bicycles. In 1879, Pirelli invented the first bicycle tyres.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, the company started manufacturing car tyres and entered the world of competitions, winning significant races such as the Paris-Beijing car race, supplying tyres to the Itala 35/45 HP.
Since the 1920s, the company has become the main protagonist of important racing events such as the Formula 1 World Championship, where it is still the official supplier, the Superbike and the Mille Miglia.
Pirelli’s flagship has always been the constant search for technological innovation: suffice to remember the introduction of Centurial radial, lowered tyres, and fibre optic cables.
For nearly fifty years, one of the most important and enlightened entrepreneurs of the last century, was Leopoldo Pirelli, who started and put in place the idea of an ethical company capable of combining technical innovation with staff care, battling for the 5-day working week and keeping an open dialogue with trade unions and workers.
The legacy of Leopold Pirelli, who disappeared in 2007, was picked up by his son-in-law Marco Tronchetti Provera in 1992, who is still the head of the group, today.
Pirelli is currently a leading company in the tyre industry at an international level, for automobiles, motorcycles and cycling; It operates in more than 160 countries and boasts its presence in the Premium and Prestige production segments, namely those dedicated to high technology articles.
R&D are the operative words for a group that has always invested significant amounts to ensure innovation and quality to consumers: every year, 6% of turnover is reinvested in research, a sector where Pirelli has a portfolio of over 5,000 patents. For a company worth $ 11 billion (read more: Pirelli Reportedly Racing to Milan IPO Valued at Nearly $11 Billion) that means so much money.
Technology, of course, but also attention to the environment: Pirelli has been promoting the use of materials with minimal environmental impact for several years, showing particular attention to the protection of the ecosystem and the health of people. Prevention and identification, with the consequent resolution of any risks, are an integral part of the company’s policy aimed at the continuous improvement of the safety aspects of work, welfare and environmental protection.
Pirelli implements a multi-stakeholder economic policy, promoting sustainable growth that equally involves suppliers, customers, employees, the environment and institutions; This is through continuous market monitoring and feedback requests to stakeholders so that a continuous business assessment can be made to improve the quality of its products and services.
Global Quality Policy characterises Pirelli’s entire production, and extends to the Group’s services and relationships. The cutting edge is its ability to anticipate the future by creating innovative articles. This goal is summed up in the Premium Strategy, designed by Pirelli to offer excellence and innovation.
Pirelli is also distinguished as the main sponsor of Inter, the Italian Winter Sports Federation and the Alpine Ski World Championship. Since 2017, it has been the official sponsor of the Giro d’Italia (Tour of Italy) and the Under 23 Giro d’Italia.
One of the company’s most iconic items is, of course, the Pirelli calendar: created in 1963, it is a limited edition calendar, not on sale to the public but given to selected VIPs and customers. A prestigious symbol, it is currently an important launch pad for models and photographers, but also for the company itself, which takes a bit of its black tyre culture and features a glamorous glam patina.
Pirelli’s employer branding
Giuseppe Addezio, director of Pirelli’s human resources, has fully described in Marco Minghetti’s book, Collaborative Intelligence, the new employer branding strategies that the tyre giant has been implementing since 2011, in a three-stage articulated restructuring.
Prior to its presence on social media, the Pirelli Group started a diagnostic phase, analysing itself: image, identity, and profile to be defined on the basis of employee and management interviews and control over the company’s positioning in the reference market, especially composed of young graduates in engineering and economics.
The second step was to develop a new Employee Value Proposition (EVP), that is, the complex of reasons why the group is tempting. In other words, those features that make Pirelli a winning and satisfying choice for its staff.
The third and last step involved communicating the EVP: not only via the traditional channels, such as career days, job meetings, meetings with students and graduates, but also by exploring the so-called web 2.0. That is, the new way of using the network for collaborations and sharing.
So Pirelli, on the initiative of the Human Resources Department, decided to explore the sea of the internet, and it did so starting from LinkedIN, the famous social network dedicated to job recruitment. Until then, that is, mid-2012, the group profile was barely updated and also included obsolete information. The need to implement the page and exploit the possibilities of LinkedIN was felt, building a business image that was also attractive on a virtual platform.
It’s worth remembering that in that period LinkedIN accounted for about 170 million members, today it is over 200, and therefore the opportunity to get acquainted in a more precise way, that goes beyond the name, already well-known internationally, explains Addezio’s and the entire human resources team’s choice to enhance the company profile.
Pirelli on social media today
Today, Pirelli’s LinkedIN profile has three free consultation pages: a home presentation of the company, a career-targeted page dedicated to social recruiting and showing growth opportunities within the group, and a product page that offers a full range on the articles produced.
Pirelli’s intuitions and adaptability to new technologies and the new way of doing business – a strategy that has proved successful in just a few years, so far it is one of the most active companies in the field of employer branding.
From 2012 to today, Pirelli’s presence on social media has expanded on all fronts: the group is active both on social media like Facebook, where it is followed by over 1,600,000 people, and on other platforms such as Instagram (more than 85,000 Followers) and Twitter (over 12,000 followers), and on content communities like Youtube.
Pirelli has intensified its commitment, consistency and above all a steady work of mutual exchanges with all stakeholders, looking at innovation and reducing hierarchical differences: these are the ingredients that have allowed the group to reach the goal of a recognised social leadership at an international level, so that it was the only Italian company to enter the ranking of European companies with the best web communication.
Social networks are often used by the company to convey important information about the company’s future. For some weeks now, for example, there is a great deal of information (including on unofficial channels) on Pirelli IPO, which should come short and according to experts, should be the most important early public offer of the year, as Pirelli to overtake AIB with largest European IPO this year.