The Italian Job: A Factory Owner Seeks Market Freedom in Poland

An Italian businessman moves his plant to low-cost Poland overnight
The Italian national flag flies in Turin Photograph by Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg

Early in August, Fabrizio Pedroni wished his employees a happy summer holiday and told them to return to work in three weeks. That night, he began dismantling his electrical component factory in northern Italy and packing its machinery off to Poland. “Had I told them earlier about any plans to shift the production abroad, they would have occupied my factory and seized all my stuff,” says Pedroni, owner of his family company Firem. “The plain truth is that I wanted my business to survive, and there weren’t the right conditions for me to operate in Italy any longer.”

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