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Interview with Alessandro Celli, CEO of A.Celli Nonwovens

news | Simone Morgantini, 23 November 2021

CEO Alessandro Celli tells us about A.Celli Nonwovens and how the company is experiencing this delicate historical moment, between experience and innovation, with great attention to topical issues such as sustainability and digitization.


A.Celli Nonwovens is a well-known brand in the nonwoven sector and needs no introduction. However, we would like to open this interview talking about the A.Celli Group as a whole: what are its distinctive features?

The A.Celli Group currently consists of five companies and is now present in all continents and in more than 50 countries. The Group has more than 500 employees around the world and benefits from numerous synergies deriving from the collaboration of individual companies.
One of the strengths of our Group is certainly the high experience in the paper and nonwoven industry, with over 85 years of activity behind it. This allows us to have a full understanding of our customers' specific production needs and to provide the most suitable machinery and services. Here another great strength of ours comes into play: the integration of end line solutions, from wrapping, packaging, labeling, internal logistics and automatic warehouse, up to the loading of finished products on the truck. We are able to provide perfectly integrated and digitized solutions, traceable and verifiable entirely remotely.
Finally, the Group's offer is extremely wide: going from turnkey Tissue production lines, to Industry 4.0 digital solutions and onto warehouse automation applications, A.Celli is able to provide reliable, efficient and high quality solutions.


The world has changed radically and A.Celli has been able to ride this metamorphosis. He tells us about the last two years of activity, from the pandemic onwards.

The Covid-19 emergency has introduced new routines, practices and goals. Since the first days of the pandemic, we have taken steps to respond to the two major variables that have overwhelmingly come to undermine our daily lives, namely the health needs of both our people our business. As regards the first, very important challenge, we have responded with a great ethical spirit, reorganizing all company departments, adopting procedures to guarantee the safety of workers, such as scheduling work shifts that would allow compliance with the expected interpersonal distances. We have also encouraged remote working and provided both our staff and external visitors with all the necessary protective equipment, such as sanitary gel and FFP2 masks.
At the same time, we focused on developing an action plan that takes into account both the central role that our solutions play in the hygienic industry and the reduced possibility of travel for commercial visits and on-site technical assistance. This plan envisaged, for example, the strengthening of our digital marketing activities and the adoption of specific platforms that would allow us to be present and cancel the distances between us and our customers and prospects. Finally, as an act of extreme responsibility, we have also implemented numerous actions in support of institutions, welfare structures and associations, such as the donation of medical technologies and health devices in favour of the Lucca hospital.


You spoke of "eliminating distances between the company and the customers": this was certainly a fundamental factor. In this regard, how important do you consider the assistance and customer care service at A.Celli?

The customer care and after-sales service is one of our flagships, a fundamental pillar on which the reputation of our Group is based. Our customers can in fact count on dedicated teams made up of engineers with many years of experience in the field capable of providing, for example, 24-hour assistance, original spare parts (with particular attention to the immediate availability of the parts defined as critical), scheduled maintenance, upgrade and rebuilding on existing machines - both A.Celli and other brands - and specific and exclusive training courses promoted by our A.Celli Academy.


Regarding the challenges on the road to sustainability, what are the main obstacles in your sector?

As for the paper industry, even if great strides have been made in the last 20 years, extremely energy-intensive processes characterize it. It therefore becomes of primary importance to understand which processes contribute most to the energy consumption of a system and, above all, how to intervene to reduce these consumptions. For our part, we are able to provide our customers with numerous solutions in this regard, such as the adoption of motors and other components with greater energy efficiency, systems for the recycling of process water and for the recovery of thermal energy and technological solutions developed specifically to reduce energy consumption in the drying phase of the paper sheet.
As regards nonwoven, however, a critical aspect is certainly that linked to environmental sustainability and the complete traceability of finished products. A.Celli is able to provide solutions that allows a perfect traceability thanks to the brand new digital systems in the Cloud and to the use of natural or biodegradable fibers or their combinations with synthetic fibers.
Finally, we would like to underline how the efforts of the A.Celli Group in the "green" direction have been rewarded this year by the financial magazine Il Sole 24 Ore and Statista, which recognized our Group as a member of the 2021 Sustainability Leaders, and by Forbes Italia (in collaboration with Kon Group and Credit Suisse), which included A.Celli among the 100 Italian excellences in the field of sustainability.


Which sectors and markets are you aiming at?

From a commercial point of view, A.Celli Nonwovens offers a very broad portfolio of solutions that includes not only the winding / unwinding / rewinding processes of nonwoven materials but also multifunctional lines for high-speed lamination, for the treatment of products for medical use and for the processing of reels of soft and small format material (Spooling and Festooning).
The A.Celli Group also offers Integrated Solutions for the handling, packaging, movement and automatic storage of reels, Digital Solutions for the optimization of production and maintenance processes and flexographic printers developed to offer the highest print quality on a wide range of substrates. All this without forgetting the equally vast offer of the A.Celli Paper division, with technologies and services dedicated to the special paper, graphic paper and packaging paper industries.
From a geographical point of view, we have the honour and responsibility of being globally present. We can say that we have been present for years in five continents, where advanced engineering skills - together with digital systems - applied to the hygienic industry are required. This scenario does not prevent us from identifying greater growth opportunities in Asia, in particular in China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, without forgetting the high potential represented by India.


What does "Made in Italy" quality mean to you?

Our company bases its strength on the philosophy of "Value": to give our customers a real and measurable technological and market advantage that translates into a competitive advantage. All this while giving our products and services that “touch” of unmistakable Italian creativity that differentiates us from our German, Chinese or any other country competitors.
We would not have had this positioning, this credibility and this commercial success if we had not offered the highest technological quality and the best customer service. All the solutions that come out of our engineering department are the result of passion and unmistakable Italian style. This approach is part of our DNA, and is rooted in the teaching we have received from the entrepreneurial generations that preceded us.

We started our interview by saying that the world has changed, and it certainly won't stand still. Where do you see A.Celli Nonwovens in 10 years?

Thanks to the commitment made over the years and the quality of our solutions recognized by the market, A.Celli Nonwovens is proudly the global leader in the market of end line solutions for the production of nonwovens. Our goal will therefore be to consolidate our production range and expand the range of products and services to the entire integrated logistics with user-friendly digital solutions, in order to help our customers grow using our technology in a simple and intuitive way. Another pillar of our strategy is based on the awareness that in the company it is not only the financial capital that counts, but also the people and their training. Their attachment to the company and the values it represents are of absolute importance to us.