Towards a better future

29th of June 2012
Towards a better future

Italian correspondent Anna Garbagna reports from the Forum Pulire in Milan.

The Forum Pulire – First National Congress of Integrated Services, which took place in Milan recently, was an opportunity to take stock of  the situation in the cleaning sector  and it was declared a great success.

Over 280 delegates attended the debates hosted during the two-day event and the participants received great interest from the entire production chain. The  sector’s leaders and the main players among manufacturers, distributors and service companies gathered together to tackle topics of discussion on the current situation, and future of the sector.

There was excellent representation for the sector from the institutions that attended the event - namely the vice president of the European Parliament Gianni Pittella and president of Confcommercio Carlo Sangalli. The meeting focused on the great potential of the integrated services market for creating stable qualified employment, without forgetting the importance of training, professional motivation and dignity in a market sector in which the workforce is the
key component.

It was noted there is considerable potential growth for cleaning companies as well as manufacturers. A survey presented by Renato Mannheimer on the topic of management of cleaning services in companies, revealed that 68 per cent of Italian companies manage the service in-house and 95 per cent of them use non professional, domestic or commercial products.

Outsourcing and specialisation have therefore become two key points for the development of a market which, if correctly trained, will not only be able to overcome the economic crisis but will also grow.

"Forum Pulire was the first real opportunity for the sector’s players to exchange views, where it was possible to define everybody’s expectations and to identify a line of comparison for the development of the entire sector," declared Toni D’Andrea, managing director of Afidamp Servizi, who organised the event on behalf of Afidamp.

"The fact that all the main sector’s companies were present and that the associations of the supply chain actively contributed to the success of the event only reconfirmed the need to reflect and to share critical information and solutions."

The meeting was also an opportunity to discuss some figures: the turnover in 2011 was 1.5 billion euros (up 3 per cent compared to 2010) and it rose to 2.3 billion including related industries according to data from Afidamp (the Italian association of machines, products and tools manufactures for professional cleaning and environmental hygiene).

"The theme 'cleaning as absolute value’ was meant to provoke debate, because obviously the common perception was not leaning in that direction," said D'Andrea. "Thanks to the number of threads of discussion which emerged  during the Forum Pulire it was clear that cleaning is truly an absolute value. A cleaner town lowers the level of micro crime; a clean and healthy background attracts visitors giving a boost to trade and tourism.

"These are factors that have been widely quoted and which the entire supply chain cannot disregard in the future. Therefore we will put ourselves to work immediately for the second edition, planned for 2014, so that it alternates with the Pulire exhibition in Verona, which takes place every uneven year," he concluded.


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