Articles - Archive

Symposium: aesthetics in automobile sales and distribution

Anticrisi Day

The theme of the symposium, developed through the contribution of speakers such as Andrea Zagato, Marco Turinetto, Loris Casadei and Art Director Marella Rivolta Zagato, really did hit the nail on the head: in short, it took a close look at the need to develop, through a deep analysis of the very concept of aesthetics, styles and behaviours, the close relationship that these inevitably create with the Final Client. All for the benefit of small and medium enterprises, which represent the backbone of automotive sales and distribution in our country. 

Nicola Giardino

Anticrisi Day once again came to the fore with a Symposium on Aesthetics in Automobile sales and distribution, the latest challenge for Umberto Seletto’s creativity. The conference was held on June 23, a few weeks after the successful presentation of the Automotive Dealer Report (ADR) 2016 by Italia Bilanci in the new Bossoni Automobili’s headquarter in Orzinuovi.

A full day centered around automotive beauty and art. Aesthetics is the philosophy of art and still more the philosophy of the beauty of art. It is not just the perception of art forms and the pleasure in the eye of the beholder, but also richness of thoughts that art and beauty are able to arouse in each one of us. Set in two different moments and in two thrilling locations the Symposium, predictably, provided each participant with much food for thought.

During the morning, the Service Manager’s Council, a Professional Development organization strongly supported and invited by Umberto Seletto to be a part of the Anticrisi day, debated at the Fratelli Cozzi Museum in Legnano topics of great professional interest under the theme Aesthetics behind the place, the relationship, the customer experience, the offer and the piece of iron. After an introduction by Elisabetta Cozzi, assisted by Maurizio Sala, the museum project was illustrated by architect Gabriele Buratti from the eponymous Milanese architectural firm, and many reports on a number of aspects pertaining to the automotive industry were discussed. Worthy of consideration was a speech by Luca Montagner on Furniture, an essential element for innovation in the workshop. Carlo Mantellini, founder of Diavia and up until recently, also chairman of Delphi Italia, related the success story of his company. Created to seize the temporary opportunity of air conditioning in retrofit version, Diavia, currently under the control of a large US multinational, provides comfort cooling for companies such as  Maserati and Ferrari.


In the afternoon, after the audience moved to the Zagato Hub in Arese, work resumed on the theme Aesthetics of language and image, centered on the speech by Andrea Zagato, last and only surviving member of the traditional Lombard design school. The automobile, thanks to the work of designers, sets trends as it is viewed as an expression of various shapes, different philosophies, describing the different living habits and culture of a community. A car’s body is much more than something “clothing” its mechanical parts, but transmits the same pleasurable sensations of a beautiful dress or suit. The beauty and design of a specific model generates interest and stimulates the desire to possess it. Before Zagato, cars were massive and heavy, shaped as horse-drawn carriages. Zagato was a great innovator, drawing inspiration from the cockpits of the first airplanes he designed cars that simply made history. Marco Turinetto, an architect who teaches at the Milan Politecnico, followed with an interesting speech on industrial design and the aesthetics behind the shapes of iconic objects. Finally Loris Casadei, a well known figure thanks to the many years spent in senior positions at Porsche Italia and Unrae (Association of foreign car makers operating in Italy), concluded the official reports of the symposium.

Umberto Seletto was rather satisfied because the Symposium developed not only the theme of aesthetics, but it also took a close look at the need to develop innovative styles and behaviors in the field of customer relationship. All for the benefit of small and medium-sized enterprises, which represent the vital backbone of car sales and distribution in Italy. The number of participants at the Symposium went simply beyond the most optimistic expectations, with 250 car distribution specialists, 150 of which engaged in after-sale activities.


Vittorio Sgarbi’s speech on aesthetics was highly anticipated by all in attendance and graced the fine dining offered by Exxon Mobil to the 150 guests who came to bid farewell to Umberto Seletto, who has recently resigned, at his request, from the largest US oil multinational, after a long and intense collaboration, giving him the opportunity, and the time to closely follow, with renewed passion, all the activities around the “Anticrisi Day” event, as well as his many personal and professional interests. Only a few years ago it would have been impossible to imagine that the long and solid collaboration of Umberto Seletto with ExxonMobil could end so prematurely and well ahead of the retirement age. And yet it happened, confirming Seletto’s extraordinary taste for the unpredictable. In reality, his closest friends and collaborators have long been aware of his intentions to devote more time to his many interests as well as his family. But, as it often happens, it was thought that the day would never arrive, or that, perhaps, it would at a much later date. Nevertheless, we cannot help being curious at his new adventure, confident that we will soon enough see him at work with the next “Anticrisi Day” and perhaps, who knows, much more. The next date has already been fixed:  November 25 in Bolzano at the Autocity headquarters of the Barchetti Group for the presentation of the midterm Automotive Dealer Report (ADR). Thank you, Umberto, for what you did (and will still do) in favor of car sales and distribution, and good luck with your work.


Umberto Seletto

A capable weaver of networks and relationships, Umberto Seletto likes to consider himself "a simple man dealing with complex ideas" for which he lived and worked with great commitment, chasing the dream of open, respectful and up-building relationships. In 2008 he created the “Anticrisi Day”, a nonprofit community that he manages, and which spontaneously aggregated a large segment of the national car distribution network, made up of large dealers and great professionals. “Anticrisi Day”, generated a lot of interest among car makers, marking a new way to establish open, responsible and constructive relationships, a new etiquette as well as a different lexicon focused on business and its importance. Seletto has long been a strong supporter for a dialogue in which there are no counterparts, but only people working together for a common interest. In 2011 he was awarded the Gipa Prize "Coup de Coeur" for his ability to devote himself to the common cause of car maintenance and repair as well as organizing activities of great interest and participation, aimed at sharing experiences and information essential for the specialists. His professional activity spanned over thirty-five years on behalf of a number of oil companies. In recent years, he managed ExxonMobile’s car lubricants business unit in Italy. A great enthusiast of the art of speaking, he also enjoys defining himself a good eater, a conscientious drinker and a theorist on curiosity as an opportunity to establish relationships. With his great friend Cesare Soresina, who passed away prematurely, he wrote “ ‘34 volte con’ i.e. find out what it takes to sell”. A few years later a new editorial adventure, "Il Marketing Etilico" together with another great friend, Renzo Servadei.

back to archive