Merloni Essay

5359 Words Mar 5th, 2014 22 Pages
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REV: AUGUST 7, 2001

JANICE H. HAMMOND

Merloni Elettrodomestici SpA: The Transit Point Experiment
Dr. Vittorio Merloni was president of Merloni Elettrodomestici, a major Italian manufacturer of domestic appliances. On the evening of February 23, 1986, he stood in the doorway of his Milano warehouse and surveyed the scene before him. In front of him stretched a sea of people dressed in evening attire—over 1,000 in all, not including the catering staff and the comedians, dancers, and musicians who had been hired to entertain. Dr. Merloni’s guests were busy chatting, eyeing hors d’oeuvres, juggling drinks, sidling up to the sumptuous buffet table; few would have guessed that at that moment they were socializing in the
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Before the night’s end, he would greet another 1,000 clients, raffle off three Autobianchi Y-10 Turbo cars and 20 of his company’s “Margherita” washing machines, and present seven of the country’s most promising young restaurateurs with awards in conjunction with l’Espresso magazine. Vittorio Merloni was a connoisseur of big business, Italian-style.

The Transit Point Experiment
Preparations for the extravaganza had been underway for months. The first order of business had been to select a suitable site for the events. Milano was considered to be the best city for the
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Professor Janice H. Hammond and Research Associate Maura Kelly prepared this case. HBS cases are developed solely as the basis for class discussion. Cases are not intended to serve as endorsements, sources of primary data, or illustrations of effective or ineffective management. Copyright © 1990 President and Fellows of Harvard College. To order copies or request permission to reproduce materials, call 1-800-545-7685, write Harvard Business School Publishing, Boston, MA 02163, or go to http://www.hbsp.harvard.edu. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, used in a spreadsheet, or transmitted in any form or by any

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