Sergio Bonalumi - interview with the Director-General of Hager Bocchiotti

Sergio Bonalumi – an interview with the Director-General of Hager Bocchiotti

Written by Angela

In September 2019 we organised a corporate event for Hager Bocchiotti, a leading firm in electrical components, for the launch of a new product. The set-up of the event, as is always the case with product launches, was carefully designed to maximise impact. It’s not necessarily easy to think of creative solutions to present industrial components, but we do believe that creativity consists of tracing the connections that no-one else can see. We choose an unusual theme for this event: the works and style of Piet Mondrian, the celebrated Russian painter, who invented neoplasticism. In the same way, we created “neopablism”, after the name of the product we were presenting (“Pablo Style”, a particular type of distribution board). After the event, we interviewed Sergio Bonalumi, Hager Bocchiotti’s Director-General for Italy.

The aspect of this event that struck everyone as the most peculiar and fascinating was the association with Piet Mondrian. How are art and electric engineering connected and how can they come to work together as motivational tools in a corporate launch?

It’s all about paradoxes and using them to overcome obstacles. Pablo Style is a distribution board that will contain the switches protecting the whole system from short circuits and overloads, in our homes, offices, stores and public places. It’s the kind of object that gets hidden, rather than showcased. We went the opposite way: we invested in design, to create a product that combined efficiency with style, something that our customers would want to put on display, rather than hide. This challenge is the result of a specific need for innovation: home and office systems are increasingly automated and those living and working in those spaces need to be able to access and control them. Creating a distribution board that is actually pleasant to look at is a way of promoting a change of habit, encouraging customers to have Pablo Style installed in a prominent, clearly visible and easily accessible position.

Modern design can turn the simplest of products into a sophisticated decorative element. Is that the kind of transformation you were going for?

Precisely. And why a plastic box will never be particularly sophisticated – however useful it might be – we still had Pablo Style’s design perfected by a team of international experts, with an eye to the unique needs and trends of the Italian market – which is always at the forefront of design innovation.

Let’s talk about in-event brand communication: is it important to convey confidence and project reliability during events such as this one?

Our brand is about achieving results that exceed the individual elements coming into play. And branding is about visibility and awareness. Since this was an internal event, we focused on building a strong, shared sense of identity. We wanted our salesforce to acquire a solid image of the company and the product so that they can communicate that same image to our future customers later on. Ours is a two-pronged communication strategy: company branding on one side and product promotion for Pablo Style on the other.


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Milan is a hub of international events, with hundreds of eclectic venues to choose from. What made you choose this particular venue for your event?

Over the past ten years, Milan has progressed immensely – after stalling briefly at the beginning of the new century. It has become a charming city, open to innovation and creative energy. It wasn’t hard to find the right place in this city: we wanted something that embodied this very spirit.

The Hager Bocchiotti Convention in Milan was a rich, complex and intense event. How much support did you feel you required from us on this occasion?

Hager Bocchiotti is a young company (celebrating its second birthday in January 2020) and our team was formed relatively recently. The Pablo Style event was our second big challenge so far, and definitely the most important in our brief history. We needed to work with experts, with a team of quick and effective professionals and, above all, with someone who understood our needs and background. We found all of this in Smart Eventi: the service was effective, fast and to the point, we shared goals, considered options and confided in your experience as event planners. This is the kind of collaboration I wish for, going forward.

Could you sum up the Hager Bocchiotti September event in three words?

Design. Beauty. People.

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Informazioni sull'autore


Publisher and co-founder of the communication agency Fiore & Conti Gbr. She lives and works in Berlin.

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