February 20 2004. FIAMM Automotive has marked the start of 2004 with a raft of new product releases, including its ground breaking Wind and Storm batteries for motorcycles and Quads.

"We're hitting the market hard," says Managing Director Paul Drennan. "Not just with batteries but with a complete support package that makes it easier for dealers and factors to sell to their customers. In such a competitive market, you've got to go that extra mile to be different and FIAMM has already travelled a long way."

The FIAMM name has been around for more than 60 years and its Global HQ is based where the company was founded in Montecchio, Northern Italy.

Originally set up to sell electric trucks, the business quickly diversified into new products and new markets. Automotive batteries were a key component in this expansion and have since been joined by acoustic vehicle horns - the company now has a 40% share of the global OE and replacement market - and automotive antennas. Other automotive related products are in the wings and promise an exciting year ahead.

Annual sales now exceed €500m with automotive components accounting for more than 65% of the total. The remaining business comes from industrial batteries used to power fork lift trucks and similar equipment and to provide standby power in emergencies.

Research and development across the entire product range has helped FIAMM to compete effectively. As with all manufacturers, the company's automotive business was originally built on traditional flooded designs. During the past ten years, however, FIAMM has introduced sealed valve regulated products - a new breed of battery with a performance to match the demands of modern bikes. Storm, for example, has high cold cranking current, low maintenance and a long shelf life.

"It certainly hasn't replaced the traditional product which, of course, has continued to evolve," says Paul. "It simply offers an alternative."

Many top car and bike manufacturers fit FIAMM batteries as original equipment and the company is also making significant advances in aftermarket sales.
"A good pedigree obviously helps", concludes Paul, "but ultimately, customers judge suppliers on their performance. Fail to deliver the right product at the right time and sixty years of history means nothing."