This week we take you to the beautiful island of Sicily to discover the 6th story from UniCredit's 2021 Annual Report. Our client Donnafugata, one of the finest wine producers in the world that combines tradition, passion, innovation and sustainability, has been partnering with UniCredit, to embrace its growth plans over the years. Read this unique Made in Italy story.
Donnafugata was founded in Sicily in 1983 by Giacomo Rallo and his wife Gabriella with a shared desire to innovate the style and reputation of Sicilian wine globally. Today, José and Antonio Rallo, the fifth generation of the family, lead the company along with a team of people dedicated to “Made in Italy” excellence.
José Rallo acts as both the face and voice of the company. The leader of the marketing and public relations team also has lent her vocal talent to the Donnafugata Music & Wine project, a revolutionary multisensory experience that pairs wine with music. José is also a member of the board of direc tors of Assovini Sicilia, the ICE Agency, and FAI.
Antonio Rallo is the company’s agronomist and winemaker, gifted with a strategic vision and unwavering in his commitment to the Sicilian wine sector. He heads the Consortium of Sicilian DOC Wines, a promotional and territorial cohesion network that counts more than 8,300 wine- growers amongst its members.
Sicily is a wine-producing region rich in biodiversity and with an extraordinary climate. Donnafugata’s identity is firmly rooted in this environment. In addition to its historic cellars in Marsala, the company’s estates cover more than 400 hectares of vineyards; from the lands overlooking the sea on Pantelleria, to the hilly landscape of Contessa Entellina and Vittoria, to the rugged territory of Mount Etna.
The company has been committed to eco-sustainable development in its territory for more than 30 years. To Donnafugata, sustainability is the key to Sicilian quality wine: good practices are applied in the vineyards, such as the cultivation of native varieties. In the cellar, it has adopted energy-saving measures and produces clean energy from renewable sources. Donnafugata’s sustainable certifications include Carbon and Water Footprint by DNV-GL and SOStain, which promote the sharing of environmentally-friendly good practices and transparent communication with customers.
Sicily’s historical-cultural heritage is in the heart of Donnafugata inspiring the dialogue between wine, literature, and art: the company’s name alludes to the famous Italian novel Il Gattopardo and the story of the fleeing queen, who found refuge where the vineyards are today. The signature labels are a trait of Donnafugata, representing the world and the colors of the island through tradition and innovation.
Donnafugata believes in its corporate social responsibility and has supported various projects over time: these include the donation of a Pantelleria garden to the FAI (Fondo Ambiente Italiano), which is open to the public, the financing of the Giuseppe Nenci Prize of the Scuola Normale di Pisa and the recovery of two precious Sicilian puppets at the “Pasqualino” Museum in Palermo.
A unique feature of Donnafugata is the role of women within the company’s organization who make up 40% of the managerial positions. Excluding the production sector, women represent 52% of Donnafugata. The company places great importance on the ongoing training of human resources.
In constant pursuit of new challenges, UniCredit, our long-standing partner, has embraced our growth plans over the years, supporting, in particular, the recent investments that led to the creation of the Etna and Vittoria estates.
CEO José Rallo commented: “We are a family business in perpetual motion, an example of an authentic and sustainable wine producing Sicily. In constant pursuit of new challenges, UniCredit, our long-standing partner, has embraced our growth plans over the years, supporting, in particular, the recent investments that led to the creation of the Etna and Vittoria estates. Areas that have further reinforced our premium positioning with small, prestigious productions from unique territories and vineyards”.
Discover more stories from our 2021 Annual Report here: https://annualreport.unicredit.eu/en?intcid=INT-IG_CTA0070