Guglielmo Papaleo’s industrialist adventure begins in 1945. After a short run as clerk in a little foods shop in the capital of Calabria, decides to open a little shop in Corso Mazzini, where he puts a little coffee machine.
Two years later, in 1947 he decides to product and to sell coffee and to amplify the rooms of his shop in order to give the possibility of taking his coffee: this initiative is suddenly successful among the citizens of Catanzaro.
In 1952 the activity is moved to the quarter "Stratò" of Catanzaro where it begins targeting the entire country through the use of curious adverting vehicles having the shape of a coffee, pot with a cup made from a Fiat 1100.
In 1960 there is yet another translocation, this time to Catanzaro Sala, in a bigger facility, more suitable for the levels of production that the firm has reached.
Finally in 1970 another milestone is achieved in production levels that required yet another move to the present factory, at Copanello of Stalettì. This final location is a very modern and efficient plant which allowed for production levels never before seen in Southern Italy.
In 1970 Guglielmo Papaleo is appointed Commendatore della Repubblica an honorary state appointed title given to Papaleo for his extraordinary achievement in the industry.
All this eventually led to Guglielmo Caffe becoming a corporation in 1972, Guglielmo S.p.a.
In 1984 Guglielmo’s son-in-law, Roberto Volpi, comes from Milano and joins the firm bringing with him the Northern Italian industrialist spirit while maintaining the family values and traditions associated with Guglielmo S.P.A. This helped Guglielmo to further grow and set more unprecedented production levels. At present R. Volpi is managing director of the firm.
In 1985 the first computer is introduced making the production automated, a milestone for the firm. Another big change in this year is the logo. Guglielmo decides to change the image of his firm by replacing the old logo displaying the famous Guglielmo Tell shooting a target with present concentric rings image. The company slogan is also changed to "Guglielmo il caffe` che fa centro" ("Guglielmo the coffee that hits the spot")
There are two other important moments worth mentioning the associations established with, "Torrefattori Bar" (certifying quality) and cooperation with "Sao Caffè". In 1997 Guglielmo Papaleo is appointed "Cavaliere del lavoro" (Knight of the Labor) yet another honorary title to award Guglielmo’s genius.
In March of that same year the first grandson of Papaleo, Daniele Rossi, is hired by the firm and handed responsibility for planning and quality control of production.
A year later Matteo Tubertini, a second grandson of Papaleo is introduced to the firm and giving responsibility for exporting Guglielmo coffee outside the country. Matteo can be attributed with allowing Guglielmo to expand into most of Europe and forming the strategic alliance with their US Importer L'Espresso USA.
The company decides to expand its market, starting to participate at the most important international exhibitions for the coffee sector in Portugal and Germany; these choices bring an exponential growth in the foreign market. At the same time are created also two new warehouses for the storage of raw materials and purchased a new machine that allows to pack 80 bags of 250 grams per minute.
Guglielmo Papaleo ends his earthly existence, leaving an unforgettable memory of hard work and dedication to all his employees and those who knew him and appreciated his human qualities. Today his family continue his work with these same values, so the name of the great founder of Guglielmo Caffè will be present, today and always, in the houses of Calabria and not only.
Guglielmo Spa opens new societies in Milan and Rome to distribute Guglielmo Caffè in the Center and in the North of Italy. The company makes significant investments in communication for three new television commercial spots and a new print advertising campaign.
Guglielmo Spa creates its e-commerce website, a Virtual Store where the customer can buy online something the North American market has been enjoying since the early days of the web revolution with Guglielmo USA.
In the month of July Guglielmo Spa inaugurates its new offices in Bologna, and another grandson of Guglielmo Papaleo, Beatrice Volpi, joins the company, becoming the current responsible for marketing and advertising. The new offices will be the basis for the relations with the foreign market and with the Northern Italy market. In the same year the company opens in Catanzaro its first Guglielmo Store, a project that will bring the Guglielmo Caffè even more close to its customers, with the creation of many of these flagship stores.
Is the year of the Guglielmo Art Cafè project, that combines entrepreneurial spirit and artistic creation, and of the Il Centro del Caffè project, an innovative plan for the creation of Guglielmo brand bar. Despite the economic crisis, the company increases its work in foreign markets, with new dealers and retailers, and a bigger and diffused demand of the product.
New Guglielmo Stores open in Catanzaro Lido, Botricello (CZ), Sant'Andrea dello Jonio (CZ) and Bologna: it's another big step to approach new customers also outside the Calabria region, in cozy and modern spaces.
The company celebrates its 70 years of activity; the brand is increasingly present in the distribution channels and in the collective imagination, also through the social network world. Guglielmo has a new testimonial, the actress and fashion model Denny Mendez, and it's more and more famous as a symbol of quality and taste. Another three new Guglielmo Stores open in Furci Siculo (ME), Vibo Valentia and Roma.
A synopsis of these 70 years is in this Guglielmo video production