Franco Fassi, 89, expanded small family business to eponymous global truck crane giant with many other brands under its belt
Franco Fassi, the president and founder of Italain truck-mounted loader crane maker Fassi, has breathed his last.
Fassi, who founded his crane business in 1965, died on August 26 aged 89. According to reports, he remained at his company until August 1.
Fassi’s company was originally started as a family business in 1946 by his farther Giacomo Fassi, and specialised in the sale and transport of timber, coal and building materials. As a part of the business, Franco began to work with trucks in the 1950s and 1960s, installing buckets of dumper trucks.
During the challenging times of Italy’s mid-1960s financial crisis, Fassi made an agreement with Swedish company Foco to import truck cranes into Italy, which gave him the idea of manufacturing cranes. The Fassi Group began as a crane manufacturer with a 3t capacity crane with a maximum lift height of 2m.
With experiments and research, the company sold 150 cranes within three years in both Italy and outside. By the 1980s Fassi produced a thousand units each year and led the Italian market. The next decade saw it expanding exports, eventually growing into a major group of companies that owns several brands.
Fassi’s French holding CTELM owns Marrel, a producer of loading equipment mounted on industrial vehicles. CTELM owned access equipment and truck mount producer Socage, which it sold in 2009, and this year it added another access equipment maker ATN to its stable. The Fassi Group also owns other well-known brands, such as Cranab, Slagkarft, Vimek, Brake Forest and Jekko spider cranes, with Franco’s son Giovanni Fassi at the helm as the group’s CEO.
Franco Fassi said about his philosophy: “We have always remained faithful to our history. We have grown, we have always accepted new challenges, we have never stopped or been satisfied.”