Giovanni Groppo started a carpentry workshop in Sommariva Bosco, with a production primarily focused on agricultural equipment: carts, rakes, and wagon wheels.
Fratelli Groppo is born
Giuseppe and Antonio, sons of Giovanni, founded Fratelli Groppo. At the suggestion of their sister Maria, who worked in Turin for a company that imported the first General Electric refrigerators, they began producing cabinets and refrigerated cells for grocery stores and butcher shops.
The new warehouse
The business is now well-established, and the Groppo brothers construct a new warehouse. They also inaugurate a new department dedicated to the processing of stainless steel for the interior lining of refrigerators.
Italy celebrates the 100th anniversary of national unity. In Turin, special pavilions and buildings are constructed to host various celebrations, notably the magnificent "Palazzo del Lavoro." Here, Fratelli Groppo furnishes the prestigious interior bars, marking the beginning of significant production of counters and furnishings for bars, which quickly grow in number and importance.
The large gastronomies
With the proliferation of new, larger, and more competitive supermarkets, traditional grocery stores need to explore new types of retailing. This gave rise to specialized delicatessens. During those years, the largest and most famous delicatessens in Turin were outfitted by Fratelli Groppo, who produced custom-made refrigerated counters for them.
The new generation
With the premature passing of the two founding partners, the company brought in Giuseppe's sons: Claudio in the technical direction and Livio, who took over his father's commercial and administrative duties. A few years later, the third son, Elio, also joined the company, focusing on the commercial and administrative aspects.
In these years, the traditional grocery store, the Fratelli Groppo's traditional field of activity, faced a crisis due to the increasingly fierce competition from large-scale distribution. Traditional bars also began to feel the impact of the arrival of large international chains. Fratelli Groppo chose to diversify its scope and started collaborating with various architectural studios and companies specializing in the contract sector. In addition to its traditional production, the company began producing customized furniture for banks, insurance companies, and international corporations. They were also called upon to create custom refrigerated display cases for the Caffè Florian in Venice, among other projects.
The expansion into France
Towards the end of the 1990s, Fratelli Groppo began crafting some furnishings on the French Riviera. Through word of mouth, the company initiated a rapid commercial expansion throughout the French territory, including the entire French Riviera and Provence, followed by Lyon, the French Alps, and Paris. In just a few years, foreign sales became predominant for Fratelli Groppo, accounting for 70-80% of their total revenue.
A new facility
The municipality of Sommariva Bosco creates a new industrial area on the outskirts of the town. Fratelli Groppo, whose original warehouses are now located in the urban center, acquires 15,000 square meters of industrial land and constructs an initial modern facility on one of these plots, already planning for future expansion in the adjacent lot.
The fourth generation
Giuseppe Groppo, son of Livio, graduates in Architecture and begins working full-time in the company's technical department. The overall economic atmosphere is still quite challenging due to the lingering effects of the 2008 global financial crisis, which left significant damage in almost all sectors of the economy. The entry of a 24-year-old Groppo brings a signal of confidence and hope to all employees and collaborators of Fratelli Groppo, who see in him the potential for significant continuity in the company.
The beaches of La Croisette
During these years, Fratelli Groppo experiences another significant leap in its international reputation. The company is commissioned to create six of the most important and renowned French beaches along the prestigious La Croisette in Cannes. These projects involve almost turnkey delivery of complex beachfront facilities, requiring exceptional organizational skills, scheduling, and adherence to timelines. Around the same time, Fratelli Groppo is also tasked with furnishing international airports (Nice, Brussels, Geneva).
Over these two years, Fratelli Groppo makes a significant investment by completely renovating its carpentry division. This includes the addition of a modern five-axis machining center, complemented by state-of-the-art edge banding and cutting machines. The entire setup is coordinated by an Industry 4.0 system, enabling a direct and continuous exchange of information between the technical department, production, and accounting.