Demetra S.p.A., leader in the production and distribution of agricultural machinery, appoints Eng. Alessio Riulini as new CEO of the group to lead the international development of the group and the integration of the recently acquired Dalbo A/S.
Alessio Riulini brings extensive experience in the agricultural machinery sector, gained at Maschio Gaspardo S.p.A., where since 2006 he has held roles of increasing responsibility, such as Managing Director of the subsidiaries in China and India and, later on, as group Chief Commercial Officer.
Demetra, with its brands Agrimaster, BreviAgri and Dalbo, is one of the leading European manufacturers of machinery for soil processing and preparation. In 2022, the group generated revenues of approximately €65 million, 80% of which coming from international markets, with EBITDA of around €7 million and a workforce of 170 employees. The group is experiencing continuous growth, thanks to the expansion of its product portfolio, which currently includes tillers, plows, cultivators for soil processing, compactors for seedbed preparation, shredders, and brush cutters for green maintenance. The group’s products support agricultural entrepreneurs in achieving more sustainable plantation practices by enabling the substitution of agrochemicals with mechanical soil processing, minimizing erosion and soil degradation, while simultaneously reducing irrigation needs.
Demetra has initiated an acquisition strategy aimed at covering all subsequent stages of agricultural operations, both in open fields and in closed environments (seeding, transplanting, crop protection, harvesting). The first step in this strategy was the successful acquisition of Dalbo A/S in 2022, a Danish company with 75 years of history and a leading position in the Northern European and UK markets.
Demetra’s new growth strategy will be implemented through: (i) further selective acquisitions to complete the product range with faster, more reliable, and safer machinery; (ii) an investment plan in new production capacity; (iii) an innovative industrial excellence project that will improve the efficiency of existing facilities; and (iv) the expansion of the sales network to new geographies, including markets outside of Europe.
Alessio Riulini stated: “I am honored to be part of this project and to bring my contribution to this group. Agriculture has always played a primary role and remains a crucial and strategic sector. On one hand, global food production must increase by 50% by 2050 to feed the projected 9 billion people, and on the other hand, agriculture must become increasingly sustainable by minimizing water and chemical usage while preserving the soil. Agricultural mechanization, along with new technologies, is one of the key elements in addressing these challenges. Demetra offers an excellent range of agricultural equipments, which we will expand in the future to support farmers in various stages of their work, equipping them with the best available technologies to provide outstanding products and services. The strategic plan also aims to enhance the value of our products in an increasingly dynamic and interconnected international context”.
Luciano Paiola, outgoing CEO, who will remain member of the Board of Directors, stated: “With the arrival of Alessio Riulini, Demetra is clearly heading towards internationalization and completion of the product range in complementary segments to the current ones. All the conditions are in place for Demetra to become an important point of reference in the agricultural machinery sector.”
Filippo Amidei, Managing Director of DeA Capital Alternative Funds SGR S.p.A., which controls 50% of Demetra through the Taste of Italy 2 fund, said: “We are proud to welcome Alessio Riulini, who has the ideal profile to build a great integrated industrial group. Italy holds a global leadership position in agricultural machinery, and Demetra aims to act as an aggregator for many small companies that are not yet able to compete in international markets”.
Alessandro Zanet, Investment Director of Alcedo SGR S.p.A., which controls 50% of Demetra through the Alcedo V fund, said: “Alessio Riulini’s appointment represents another step towards the strengthening of the management team and the growth and development of the group. Alessio is a recognized industry manager with significant experience and will contribute to further driving the growth of the various brands. With Alessio’s appointment, combined with the overall strengthening of the management structure carried out in recent months, the group will continue with its organic development plan and proceed with the process of aggregating other recognized entities in the market, with the goal of becoming a leading independent European player in the implements sector".