Home Business Funecap integrates Altair, the Italian-French center for funeral services is born

Funecap integrates Altair, the Italian-French center for funeral services is born

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Funecap integrates Altair, the Italian-French center for funeral services is born

France, with 67 million inhabitants, has 170 crematory ovens. Italy, with 60 million inhabitants, has only 86. And the demand to cremate the dead is growing by double figures every year. Few data are enough to understand the chances of growth and investment in a sector, the funeral one, which is rarely and reluctantly talked about, but where investments and industrial logic are crucial to improve quality, efficiency and prices on the market.

It is in this context that the news, made official on the occasion of Tanexpo, the International Funeral and Cemetery Exhibition which has just closed its 30th edition at BolognaFiere, should be read, that the Italian company Altair merged into the French Funecap Groupe, becoming a shareholder. and creating the largest pan-European group of funeral services. We are talking about 450 million of consolidated turnover, 3 thousand employees in Italy, France, Belgium and the Netherlands, “with the expectation of reaching 600 million turnover already in 2023, thanks to investments that are around 100 million euros per year, between organic growth in cremation plants and funeral services, acquisitions of small companies in the sector and partnerships that we want to forge with established players in all areas where there is demand for new funeral homes, infrastructures and quality services “, underlines Paolo Zanghieri, founder and owner of the Altair group (40 million in revenues with over 25 cremation plants and 13 contracted cemetery managements) and today shareholder with the two French partners Thierry Gisserot and Xavier Thoumieux of the Funecap group.

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Two billion sector impervious to crises

The three days of Tanexpo was an opportunity to take stock of a sector that is as little told as it is impervious to crises, with a turnover that is estimated to be worth 2 billion euros in Italy alone, where 44% of families are grappling with a funeral every year, with a demand for secular funeral homes rising alongside the increase in cremations, which today do not reach 20% of the total but are projected over 50% of the deceased between now and 2030. For not to mention cremation plants for animals, another segment destined to grow rapidly, the vertical increase in online searches for funeral services that still does not have an adequate digital response from the players, “because in Italy the sector is lagging behind in France , still very fragmented, managed mostly by small family businesses with low investment capacity, customers choose on the basis of word of mouth and are unfamiliar with funeral pensions ”, comments Zanghieri.

Holding for pan-European funeral services

The Italian-French project was born with the idea of ​​creating a pan-European holding “capable of developing funeral and cremation services, with high standards, exploiting economies of scale and synergies with local partners throughout Europe and the financial strength of a group which has an investment program of one hundred million euros a year. We just took over a company in the Netherlands a month ago and we have another couple of two acquisitions scheduled before the end of the year between Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom “, explains Thierry Gisserot, who has made Funecap the second largest French operator since 2010. , with a network of over 700 points of sale, 50 crematoria, more than 200 managed funeral structures, 2,600 employees and over 70,000 funerals organized.

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And he concludes: «We are interested in M&A and aggregations in all neighboring countries, to build a new model in the sector, because ours remains a strongly local business and the relationship with the customer and the service must remain artisanal. With Funecap Groupe, even small businesses have a strong brand and a platform that can support investments in homes and funeral structures, high-level centralized services, especially in the digital field, continuous training for staff and pension coverage and financing solutions from offer to customers “.

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