A construction entrepreneur had the first great intuition back in 1965. His name is Giuseppe Manini: this is the man who created the very first automatic gate handling system, by applying hydraulic technology.
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About us – Our History
The story of FAAC is one based on an intuition, which came to Giuseppe Manini and turned into both a product and a service. It is the story of unwavering progress, fueled by commitment and the courage to innovate.
It is the story of a small town workshop which turned into a business ready to broach new markets, in Italy first, and later the rest of the world.
It is the story of an entrepreneurial dream, which thanks to a strategic, forward-looking vision, to investments aimed at developing new technologies and a firm belief in the human factor, has grown constantly over the years, owing to both organic growth as well as acquisitions. The group today is a leading global player in the field of automation and access control.
Today, with more than half a century of history behind it, FAAC is a successful multinational firm with a strong structure and highly organized management.
After just five years came the big challenge: mass production for greater product performance and innovation
1979 - 1981
The year 1979 saw the inauguration of the first training courses for the specialized sales force and two foreign subsidiaries were opened soon after: FAAC AG (Switzerland, 1979) and FAAC France (1981).
With the development of technology which had until that time only been used for PCs, the era of the microprocessor printed circuit boards began in 1983, giving systems new and as yet unexplored features. Technology took a further leap in quality when production of electronic boards during those years was focused in Ireland, at the newly acquired FAAC Electronics Ltd, where the best components in the world were developed and the most trailblazing companies in the electronics sector got their supplies.
Between 1984 and 1990 FAAC expanded further still: to Germany and Austria (FAAC GmbH), the United Kingdom (FAAC UK), the United States (FAAC International) and Spain (FAAC SA).
Giuseppe Manini had a novel enterprising idea in 1990: a share in the French group Somfy, leader in the production and distribution of tubular motors, was acquired in exchange for the sale of a share in FAAC capital.
This was the start of a partnership which lasted a generous 25 years.
1993 was a year of great accomplishments: Autostrade SpA entrusted FAAC with the construction of high-performance automatic barriers for all its motorway toll booths; FAAC registered the patent for “Self Learning SLH”, a technology which revolutionized the transmitters market.
The acquisition of Automatica Casali (Genius brand), in 1994, of Spazio Italia, in 1999, and of Voltec, in 2002, combined with the expansion at the time across Poland, Scandinavia, Benelux, China and India ranked FAAC as an increasingly important player in the global market.
In 1996 FAAC stood out once again for its foresight and cutting-edge technology by introducing CAD 3D, a PRO software, and T3 to design its products.
2005 was the year a new product range was launched: FAAC City, a product line dedicated entirely to traffic bollards.
2006 - 2016
Between 2006 and 2007 FAAC required ALTRON – a company specializing in tubular motors for curtain and shutter automation – and DAAB (Sweden) – a company operating in the automation of automatic doors and industrial gates.
With the launch of FAAC Australia in 2007, FAAC Middle East in 2008, FAAC Turkey and FAAC Russia in 2012, the Group broached new and highly dynamic markets.
Several other acquisitions were made between 2010 and 2016: Clemsa (Spain) and Altron BV (The Netherlands) in 2010, Kemko (The Netherlands) and Zeag Group (Switzerland) in 2011, Datapark (USA), Magnetic Autocontrol Group (Germany) and Rossi Industrias Eletromecanica (Brazil) in 2012, CTR (USA) in 2013, CENTURION System (Pty) Ltd (South Africa) in 2016.
Particularly significant investments were those in the Magnetic group and in the Datapark/ZEAG, groups, which were key transactions for the group to enter the access control and parking management businesses.
In 2012, following the premature death of the majority shareholder Michelangelo Manini, the son of the founder Giuseppe, the Archdiocese of Bologna, was designated as the sole heir and thus became the owner of 66% of the Group’s shares. A few years later, with the conclusion of the judicial custody resulting from the litigation of the inheritance, FAAC acquired the remaining 34% of the share capital from the minority shareholder Somfy, paying the consideration in shares held in the same French company. Since May 2015 the combined ownership has therefore ceased to be and the group has gone back to having a single reference shareholder.
With the takeover of the new owners subsequent to the succession event, the process of separation between the shareholding structure and management which had already begun with the second generation of the founding family in the first decade of the 2000s was greatly accelerated: the management of the company was in fact entrusted to a Board of Directors composed of mostly independent professionals and a highly responsible management team.
In 2019 the group continued its external growth by acquiring Viking (USA), Wolpac (Brazil) and Parclick (Spain).
2020 - 2021
The two biggest acquisitions were made between 2020 and 2021: first the acquisition from ASSA ABLOY, from whom it acquired part of the European automatic and high-speed door business (ASSA ABLOY and Record brands), then the acquisition of the TIBA group and its Texas distributor ATI, leading operators on the American market of parking access and revenue control systems.
Last in the timeline (August 2021) was the acquisition of Gruppo Cometa, a major manufacturer and distributor of security entrances, active mostly in Italy.