TREVISO – Said “I hope the best wins! This one, we hope not” Nerio Rocco In one of his most famous sayings. Seven words to describe the basic concept. The one that the Italian champion made in Milan and remembered Oro Palumbafounder and guide of the Treviso region community groupone of the largest Italian companies (if not the first) in the field of communications and reputation management, as well President of the APA, the Association of Small Shareholders of the Rossoneri . Club Who came back 11 years later to win the Scudetto. “Milan’s victory in the Italian title is proof that you can win by pursuing the idea of ethical and sustainable football,” says Palumba, who is also an early fan of Satan.
What is the secret of this triumphant journey?
“Building and forming a team different from the Italian context, following European standards. From the beginning, the Elliott Fund and General Manager Ivan Gazidis set a new concept for Milan and we, as small shareholders, have always trusted this project.”
What are the cornerstones of this different vision of football?
“It was often said that players in Italy do not train and do not run. The company chose its own path: cutting wages, financial sustainability, eliminating controversies, and reintroducing fair play on an economic level as well. Choices that weren’t widely shared at first (just think Donnarumma’s sale) but eventually paid off. The paradigm has changed, focusing on young people who are more famous but have proven troublesome.”
Did you expect such an outcome, especially so soon?
“When we, as a junior shareholder, met Gazidis, I must say he immediately made an excellent impression on me: a person of great professional and human depth, someone who knows football well. Paolo Maldini, frankly, surprised me very much in his new role as technical director. Then Frederic Massara: He talks very little, but he is the real market man. They are behind the success of Milan: I did not think that it was possible to reach such results in such a short time, but at the beginning of the season I began to believe in them seriously. “
What is the contribution of small shareholders to this victory?
One of the initial problems was that the company, run by an American fund and a South African CEO, had nothing to do with Melania. Aba, despite owning 0.07% of AC Milan shares, brought fan requests to management, the base morale. We position ourselves as “brokers,” support Elliott’s choices and believe in the project.”
Did you always agree?
“We have always had confidence, even if we were not on the same line on the issue of the stadium. We would like one owned and not shared with Inter. And the fans think so too. We will see how it ends: on the board of directors we have two representatives, Marco Patuano and Massimo Ferrari, and then there is also Franco Carlo Papa is on the Board of Auditors and he is our partner. In any case, APA’s relations with management have always been excellent and there is always a great dialogue.”
Weeks ago there was talk of selling the company. It appears that it has moved to Investcorp, a Bahraini fund, but now it appears that the US Redbird is in the lead. Who do you prefer?
“They are two different models. The Arabs were bringing in large sums of money with the possibility of bringing great players to Milan, as they did for example with Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City in the leagues that allow other moves in terms of financial fair play. But those who care about corporate welfare, I think, understand that selling to Redbird is best. Milan will continue the path they have already taken.”
Is the next goal, then, to return as champions in Europe?
“Europe is the home of Milan. There are still economic imbalances with English and Spanish clubs (as well as PSG), but that is the will. The Champions League does not win with money, but with talent, luck and history.”
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