From Finmeccanica to Leonardo: a long process through Italy’s industrial and economic history, marking major passages in the different forms of our brand and becoming a collective memory of our company’s evolution and the transformations of our country.
1948: Finmeccanica - Società Finanziaria Meccanica started out in post-war Italy, established by IRI (Institute for Industrial Reconstruction) and under Italian State control, to restructure and reorganise Italy’s manufacturing industry, in crisis after the damages suffered during the war. Some of the country’s most important companies - Ansaldo, Alfa Romeo, OTO, San Giorgio, Salmoiraghi, Sant’Eustacchio – started new industrial developments in line with the general reconstruction of the country.
In the beginning the logo was simply the company’ name, which represented Italy’s great industry “of Machines”. A mission that, a few years later, would be evoked also through the new house organ “Civiltà delle Macchine” (Civilisation of Machines).
The manufacturing mission
In the early nineteen-fifties, for the first time and only briefly, a symbol was associated with the name Finmeccanica: a toothed wheel, to express its manufacturing mission in a more incisive manner both inside and outside the company.
The first logo
In the late nineteen-seventies, after shipbuilding exiting the Group, asset consolidation in thermo-electro-mechanics and constant development of production toward the more advanced technology sectors of aerospace and electronics, we had the first Finmeccanica logo. It’s an evolution of the symbol used twenty years earlier, intended to better define the “personality” of an industrial group.
A new logo for a new company
On 21 May 1987, Finmeccanica became an Ltd. The new company name now identified a holding company focused on important key words: business consolidation around the high technology sectors, including through a series of acquisitions in the electronics sector, internationalisation, in order to face a market that was becoming increasingly more global and competitive and technological excellence, to maintain leadership in the Group’s core sectors.
The logo was rethought, going back to just the name with its image showing the new process launched by the Group. The slightly personalised Bodoni font was meant to symbolise Italian tradition and style, promoting the growth of the Group’s personality and global leadership.
A global group for the new millennium
At the turn of the 21st century, the Finmeccanica Group took concrete steps forward in the global market of aerospace, defence and security, with international partnerships and joint ventures, important collaborations in global aeronautics and space programmes, acquisitions in Italy and abroad, reconfigurations of entire sectors in Europe and the Eurosystems and Space Alliance partnerships.
The visual identity of the Group was still very diverse; the logo name of the holding company had not changed, nor had the logos of the companies.
The world as a logo and as a horizon
The Group’s international perspective made clear the need to spread brand knowledge outside the national borders and to represent this change in the visual identity of the Group, which was too chaotic due to its many logos and therefore hard to understand in the international market.
In 2006, Finmeccanica adopted a new logo and the first group brand identity, making all company communications consistent, homogeneous, recognisable and highly connotative.
The pictogram was a sphere made up of seven “petals“ representing the group’s seven sectors and symbolising Finmeccanica’s different industrial areas, where the “vectors” of each individual “know how” converged toward a single common mission: excellence. The sphere also represented the global market Finmeccanica tends toward.
The associated logotype features a modern and simple font. All Finmeccanica companies had the same pictogram next to their name in order to represent the synthesis between specificity and team spirit that characterises the entire Group.
The logo features two colours: red and grey. The red rays of the sphere make up the F of Finmeccanica.
Seven sectors, one single Group
The activity sectors, Aeronautics, Helicopters, Space, Defence Electronics and Security, Defence Systems, Energy and Transport were characterised by the adoption of the red/blue or red/grey combination, grouping the operating companies chromatically and typographically.
Toward greater integration
The process continued in 2012 with a more rationalised Group architecture that, through an act of rebranding, introduced a single logo, colour code (grey/red) and font thus representing the entire Group even more effectively.
This way, the Group achieved greater visibility and recognisability, as an on organisation of people and knowledge skills sharing the same values and attitudes everywhere, looking to the future with the same vision.
Leonardo: a new name for the One Company
January 1st 2016 marked the beginning of a new chapter in Finmeccanica’s history. From being a holding company of independent businesses, Finmeccanica transformed into a One Company integrated and organised in divisions where the activities carried out by the companies converge. After the divestments in the Transport sector, the One Company focused on the Aerospace, Defence and Security sectors. The name that identified the Group for over 60 years is no longer adequate to represent the new image. Finmeccanica is no longer a financial (FIN) but an operating company focused on high-tech products and services that no longer reflect the original mission (MECCANICA).