Generali awards SMEs “Sustainable Heroes” in Brussels
30 September 2021
Launched to mark Generali’s 190th anniversary, the first edition of SME EnterPRIZE aims to promote new sustainable business models among small and medium-sized enterprises.
European Commissioner for Economy Paolo Gentiloni, the Chairman of Assicurazioni Generali Gabriele Galateri di Genola, the Group CEO Philippe Donnet and our Regional Officer and Generali CEE Holding CEO, Luciano Cirinà, attended the event at Hotel de Merode in Brussels to recognize 7 “Sustainable Heroes”. SMEs selected in seven European countries that have implemented notable sustainability initiatives in their businesses in three areas: environment, welfare and community. Local CEO’s of the represented countries, ambassadors, member of European institutions participated to the event too.
Among the winners in the ACEER Region, Michaela Reitterer, Austrian entrepreneur and founder of the Boutique Hotel Stadthalle in Wien that boasts the title of “first city hotel in the world with zero energy balance”. The facility comprises sustainable futures such as producing autonomously as much electricity as it consumes. The Hungarian Marianna Pinczés was awarded for Grapoila, a zero-waste company in the cold processes for the production of its oils. Lastly, Vojtech Malina from Czech Republic with Clever Farm, that through the combined use of satellite data and a state of the art sensors has brought a 30% reduction in the use of water and a 20% reduction in the use of fertilizers and pesticides.
Generali Group CEO Philippe Donnet commented: “Small- and medium-sized enterprises are a fundamental pillar of the European economy and one of the main drivers of the sustainable transition. SME EnterPRIZE is part of the strategic plan ‘Generali 2021’ and is in line with our ambition to promote a greener and more inclusive society, consistent with the European Green Deal and Next Generation EU. In addition to promoting the most noteworthy examples and supporting SMEs in adopting more sustainable business models and practices, we want to encourage a continuous exchange of views with national and European institutions as well as with academia and the private sector. That way, we can examine the challenges and development opportunities for a business segment that is key to the sustainable growth of our continent’s economy.”
On stage, together with Generali Group CEO Philippe Donnet, Luciano Cirinà, ACEER Regional Officer and Head of SMEs strategic stream, addressed the attendees reminding that insurance industry has a crucial role to fostering sustainability in SMEs and that SMEEnterprize initiative has been created to position our Group as LifetimePartner in the SMEs segment.
To conclude Luciano Cirinà said: “It's just the beginning! Our aim is to enlarge the scope of the program and make European SMEs ecosystem more structured and resilient”.