Duilio Carlessi obituary

5 September 2005

On June 25 the Italian tanning industry suffered another sad event. Duilio Carlessi, of Italian machinery specialists Fratelli Carlessi and one of the most prominent members of the machine manufacturers community, died just two months before his 80th birthday. Many will remembered him for his industrial achievements which are truly remarkable, but we wish to remember him for his extraordinary qualities as a human being. Duilio Carlessi was a real gentleman in the classic sense of the word. He was always good humoured, always wore a large smile and was always constructive, never complaining. He treated everybody alike, the young, the elderly. He simply was Duilio, not Mr Carlessi. Throughout his working life, Duilio Carlessi was always open to dialogue, particularly with young people who were able to address him in the informal 'tu' rather than the required 'lei.' The overriding memory shared by his colleagues and members of the sector is 'a man with a big personality and a shining character. He was comfortable in himself and therefore with others too', remembers Assomac director Amilcare Baccini. He underlines the importance Carlessi had in a merger of the old Cimaco (of which he was president) in the actual association. As a result of this merger the current Assomac was born. 'With him has departed an important part of our sector: his historical memory', concludes Baccini. Giulio Tandura, Carlessi's partner in Linta, says: 'beyond his honesty he was a very sweet person and his actions meant he was loved by everybody.' (Source: La Conceria) Duilio Carlessi was 28 when he took over the running of the company which his father Antonio had set up in 1925. Prior to this Duilio worked as a machinery controller. He worked on car engines, water pumps and testing and dyeing machines until he became involved in tannery machinery maintenance and repairs in Urgnano. This last job, coupled with increased leather sector activity in the area, inspired Duilio and brother Eberardo to specialise in the leather sector and led to the construction of the first drying machine with frames. In subsequent years, they relocated from their original base in the centre of Urgnano, to a new site on the outskirts. After numerous expansions, the plant covered 21,000 sq m, 8,700 of which were covered. In 1995, Fratelli Carlessi entered the splitting machine market with the participation of Linta based in Montebello Vicentino. A recent survey found that the company had exported 2,200 units to 90 countries. Duilio Carlessi has been a very important commercial figure and contributed greatly to the development of exports. Last year exports accounted for 98% of Fratelli Carlessi's revenue, much higher than their average of 70-80% over recent years. The company will continue under his son Gianluigi. Last year, after enduring a rather important operation, he was there at Tanning-Tech in October amongst his buyers and friends as if nothing had happened. Unfortunately the illness from which he suffered could not be conquered and made him surrender in June. Ciao Duilio! It was a privilege to know you. Rest in peace.

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