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Simonelli Group launches I Am One campaign

From the July 2019 issue.

Simonelli Group Vice-President Marco Feliziani describes how Victoria Arduino’s I am One campaign connects the brand to the next generation of coffee professionals.

Across its 114-year history, Victoria Arduino has managed to remain relevant, from releasing its first coffee machine in the early 20th century to the recent VA388 Black Eagle espresso machine and Mythos grinders. Marco Feliziani, Vice-President of Victoria Arduino parent company Simonelli Group, believes it has done this by connecting with, supporting, and listening to the baristas who will use its products. The brand intends to continue this legacy with its I Am One competition.

“Victoria Arduino is inspired by passion and this contest was born from this precise vision. Everyone has their own personality, dreams, and inspirations – coffee and otherwise – and we want to learn what drives coffee people,” Feliziani says.

“Our desire is to support these people, their passions, and the search of excellence. Loving what you’re doing is the best way to reach your goals.”

I Am One is an Instagram competition that sees coffee professionals post a picture on Instagram that represents their dreams, passion, personality, interest in coffee, and job, while displaying the #IAmOneVictoriaArduino hashtag.

The six pictures with the highest number of likes by 31 July be republished on Victoria Arduino’s official profile, @victoriaarduino1905. Of those, the entrant with the most likes will be invited to participate backstage at the preview of a new Victoria Arduino product in London, United Kingdom, in September.

The preview will provide the contest winner with an opportunity to connect with the global coffee industry, network, and understand what goes into the creation of Victoria Arduino’s coffee equipment.

“The preview will involve activities with very interesting people from the coffee world. The winner will have the chance to talk to people with different perspectives about coffee and what it can be,” Feliziani says.

He says it is important Victoria Arduino remains connected to up-and-coming members of the industry and sees I Am One as its next step.

“Victoria Arduino was the first espresso machine company to go outside Italy and attend exhibitions and events. It was a way to communicate to the world who and what we are. Social media is the new way of sharing this message,” Feliziani says.

“Our favourite social media channel at the moment is Instagram. You can share so much with one picture or story. From our side, we can share not only an image of a coffee machine but what goes on behind the scenes and the passionate people who worked on it.”

Feliziani says Instagram has also become the preferred network of Victoria Arduino’s youngest demographic.

“With pictures, everything is fast and to the point. You can get your message across to other coffee lovers very quickly,” he says. “You see this not only in posts but stories too. People are telling their friends what they are doing, their passions, ideas, and feelings, while they’re doing it. It’s the best way for them to communicate how they feel and what their dreams are.”

Feliziani says connecting with Generation Y is important to nurture this new wave of talent and carry on the Victoria Arduino legacy.

“We always discuss what Victoria Arduino can be in the future, and the answer is a community. This idea comes from young baristas, micro-roasters, and everybody looking for excellence in what they’re doing,” Feliziani says.

“They will design the coffee experience of the future. This generation’s approach to coffee is completely different to what mine was, even though I’m only a few years older.”

I Am One is not the only way Victoria Arduino has connected with this younger demographic. For years, the manufacturer has sponsored the World Barista Championship (WBC), increasing the visibility of its brand and support of baristas.

“People are always investing in themselves and trying to reach their targets. For baristas, there is no higher target than the WBC,” Feliziani says.

Simonelli Group also runs a Youth Academy program, which each year provides training and education to six young European baristas.

“In our Youth Academy, we’re training people who dream of being successful baristas or micro-roasters,” Feliziani says. “It’s our way of supporting young baristas who want to understand the championship and give them information on how to arrive to that position.”

Simonelli Group has also made investments in the future beyond people. The company has recently joined the Ongreening sustainable architecture network and is the first coffee equipment manufacturer to produce Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) compliant espresso machines. LEED provides a framework to create healthy, efficient, and cost-saving green buildings, and is the most widely used green building rating system in the world.

“There is a growing trend towards sustainability in most industries across the world. It’s not only social or economic, but environmental sustainability as well,” Feliziani says.

“If you want to have an office, building, or coffee shop be LEED certified, you need to respect certain parameters. With the VA388 Black Eagle, we have the first LEED-compliant coffee machine on the market, which means using it will provide a building with points towards certification.”

Feliziani adds that this demonstrates how Victoria Arduino supports people in the industry, even those not directly tied to coffee making.

“When we talk about coffee, we always think of the barista or roaster, but there are many people involved. Architects, for example, are designing these coffee shops while trying to respect the rules,” he says. “They also want a machine that provides value to the coffee shop. While architects value its sustainable aspects, consumers and baristas will value the machine’s sleek design and ease of use.”

While it is important to help grow coffee professionals, Feliziani knows that, as a coffee machine and grinder manufacturer, Victoria Arduino must produce great equipment first.

“We have to give people a product they will enjoy using, appreciate, and is aligned with their ambitions and needs,” he says.

This will be embodied in the product Victoria Arduino will preview in September.

“I can’t spoil anything at the moment, but it is something that will entice the coffee industry. Everyone involved in the production process is very dedicated and I’m excited to share something so special,” Feliziani says.

“I can say, however, that my background is in mechanical engineering, and it is very interesting from that point of view.”

Feliziani says he looks forward to the big reveal and seeing the product adopted in coffee shops around the world.

“These spaces have the function not only to serve the best espresso, but to make people feel good,” he says.

“This is what Victoria Arduino is looking for and hopes to achieve through I Am One: to make people feel good, inspire them, and, of course, promote excellence of coffee.”

For more information, visit www.victoriaarduino.com/iamone

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