Gian Luca Rana: innovation and foreign markets
Innovation, geographical expansion and food service are the three pillars of the growth strategy Gian Luca Rana has evolved since he became Managing Director of Pastificio Rana in 1989. When he first entered the family business in 1986, at the age of 21, the Pastificio was still small, with only 35 employees, a range of just 7 products, and a turnover of 30 billion Italian Lire (or about 20 million US dollars).
After learning the ropes in the procurement section, Gian Luca moved first to the Production department, where he was able to observe the product processing at first hand, and then to the Industrial Development division. By working in three different departments in as many years, Gian Luca obtained a 360-degree view of the company’s production chain. This comprehensive perspective led him to choose innovation as the philosophy on which the Pastificio’s future would be built when he became Managing Director in 1989. Accordingly, his first important decision in his role as Director was to set up the Research & Development Department that, over the years, would become one of the company’s main assets.
Gian Luca understood that innovation must be accompanied by careful attention to product quality, starting with the selection of raw materials and of suppliers, building on the methods first adopted by his father Giovanni.