Economy

Farewell to Tatu, Kaiser Franz who loved philosophy

They called him Kaiser Franz. For his studies in Germany, but above all for the position of a strict manager and decision-maker: able to restore companies and double profits, but also to cut thousands of employees. But he was also a cultured person, with a philosophical background, and a lover of books. “Manager Philosopher” wrote history books and inquired into the deep causes of his work.

Franco Tato died at the age of 90 of a stroke he suffered before endocardial surgery. He was hospitalized in San Giovanni Rotondo, at the Suffering Relief Home founded by Padre Pio. He was helped by his wife, Sonia Raul, an actress and TV presenter, and his daughter, Carolina.

Tatu was born in Lodi in 1932, into a family of Barletta origin. He graduated in philosophy in Pavia with a thesis on sociologist Max Weber, majored in Germany (thanks to a scholarship) and then at Harvard in the United States, where he paid for his studies by working in canteens. In the year 56 he was appointed to Olivetti. For the first six months, he was a worker, and then began his climb in the group.

It leads subsidiaries in Austria, the United Kingdom and Germany. In the 1980s he returned to Italy and returned the Triumph Adler he had just bought. From 84 to 86 he went to Mondadori, was invited by Carlo de Benedetti, and became its chief executive. He then returned to Olivetti to lead the Olivetti office. He left the group in 1990 due to disagreements with management. In 1991 he moved to Mondadori as CEO, and in 1993 he held the same position at Fininvest. Here he performs a radical standardization of accounts.

German training and the strict attitude of a business wizard earned him the nickname “Kaiser Franz” and the fame of “the head cutter”. But his broad and deep culture has also earned him the reputation of a “philosopher-manager”. “When I meet him in the corridor, I am afraid he will see me as a cost that must be defeated,” says Silvio Berlusconi of him. Tatò is not associated with Knight’s closest collaborator, and the sale of Standa is refused directly by the owner of Fininvest.

Thelma Binder

"Explorer. Devoted travel specialist. Web expert. Organizer. Social media geek. Coffee enthusiast. Extreme troublemaker. Food trailblazer. Total bacon buff."

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