Francesco Villa, General Manager, Gruppo Buffetti

    One of the key challenges for Gruppo Buffetti General Manager Francesco Villa has been to convince his franchisees to move over to the merchandising model that was introduced at the beginning of 2012. Out of the group's 680 stores, about 350 have accep


    Sales remained relatively flat last year at around €100 million ($130 million), but the performance of the new-look stores is outperforming those that haven’t made the switchover and Villa is hoping this will convince even more members to adopt the new merchandising.

    Sales of Buffetti’s private label stationery products grew in the double digits and the new direct web business saw its top line grow by about 30%, although this still represents a low single-digit proportion of total revenues. To help boost sales from the print category, Buffetti recently signed a partnership agreement with Xerox which will enable franchisees to benefit from special pricing and support.