Second Round Table on Italian Technology & Italian FDI
On October 25th, 2017, we were at the EPIC building on UNC Charlotte's campus for the 2nd Round Table on Italian Technology & Italian FDI in North Carolina.
Dr. Valentina Cecchi, Associate Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering in the College of Engineering at UNC Charlotte, moderated the discussion, which focused on how Italian companies can and are meeting the energy and infrastructure needs of the southeastern United States. This was done through the lens of three Italian companies here in North Carolina - Prysmian Group North America, Aleandri Group, and Redecam USA - in addition to the Carolinas AGC.
Before the discussion began in earnest, Dr. Claudio Carpano, Honorary Consul of Italy to North Carolina (as well as Associate Professor Emeritus at Belk College of Business at UNC Charlotte, and CEO & Founder of Management inSites), welcomed the group and discussed the role of Italian companies in North Carolina. With more than 100 Italian companies located in the state, employing over 12,000 people, you can see the impact they are having on the community. Plus, Italy is much more than fashion, tourism, and pizza. These companies operate in a variety of industries, including many in the manufacturing sector. As Honorary Consul, he pushes for Italy to be know for business and to highlight the business relationships between North Carolina and Italy.
Mr. Nathan Kelley, VP of High Voltage Cables and Systems with Prysmian Group North America, spoke about the company's high voltage cabling for infrastructure and construction jobs. Their parent company is headquartered in Milan, Italy, and the North American group has 13 locations across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico serving the telecom and energy markets, including a Cables and Systems office in Claremont, North Carolina.
Mr. Roberto Rossi, CEO of Aleandri Construzioni Generalia, S.p.A., was here to talk about his Italian construction company. Located in Bari, Italy, the group recently started their U.S. subsidiary, Aleandri Group, in Charlotte, NC. Their company wins large-scale governmental bids in infrastructure projects, including roads, bridges, airport expansions, but also gas and oil projects. Through their precast plant, they are able to cut costs and time, which enables them to deliver projects on-time and under budget.
Mr. Steve Wacker, VP - North America for Redecam USA, discussed the company's leading technology in air pollution control. They service a variety of industries, including Cement & Lime, Metals & Mining, Coal & Oil Power, Waste-to-Energy & Biomass Power, and Biomass & Pulp Paper. The parent company is located in Milan, Italy, and as a global provider, has turn-key installations all over the world. It's U.S. operations are headquartered out of the PORTAL Building on UNC Charlotte's campus.
Mr. Dave Simpson, President & CEO of the Carolinas AGC, was on hand to attest to the growth of the construction and infrastructure sector in North Carolina, and the southeast as a whole, as well as the needs of the industry. For example, there is a severe shortage in qualified manpower to complete all the projects that are urgently needed.
Dr. Cecchi, bringing her own research knowledge on electrical power system modeling and analysis, led the interesting discussion that followed. Through the innovation coming out of Italy, these companies are helping the area overcome some of the challenges faced with an aging infrastructure and quickly growing population.
Following the discussion, participants were welcomed to a general reception. Here the conversations continued and allowed our student attendees a chance to meet the business leaders and ask how they could be part of the solutions in the industry moving forward.
Date: Wednesday, October 25th, 2017
Venue: UNC Charlotte's EPIC Building, 8700 Phillips Rd., Charlotte NC 28223
Round Table: 6:30-7:30 pm
Reception: 7:30-8:30 pm