For more than 20 years, Fondazione Fiera Milano (a private, not-for-profit foundation that performs functions in the public interest) has promoted the rollout of initiatives for economic, social, cultural and scientific development and the organisation of trade shows in Italy and abroad, while also bolstering trade between nations by underpinning the relationships that help underpin global economic growth.
As an economic policy instrument, the exhibitions industry is a key partner for Italian companies due to its framework of Made in Italy production chains. In particular, Milan’s exhibitions network offers companies a window to the world, helping them to grow and internationalise.
Throughout the years, Fondazione Fiera Milano has been the driving force behind this network’s development by making it more competitive, socially aware and sustainable and playing an active role in territorial development, such as with the construction of the Fieramilano–Rho district, the redevelopment of Milan’s Old Town and the opening of the Allianz-MiCo Milano Congressi convention centre.
Fondazione Fiera Milano is active in the following sphere of activities:
1. Driver of Urban Development
Thanks to its policy of real estate development, the Foundation is committed to raising the profile of Milan and the metropolitan area by driving the transformation of the city’s renowned architectural, social and cultural assets through a series of spatial redevelopments with an eye to sustainability.
2. Shareholder for Development
As the majority shareholder of the Fiera Milano Group and the owner of strategic real estate assets (fieramilano, fieramilanocity and MiCo Milano Congressi), the Foundation is responsible for making major investments in exhibition infrastructure aimed to increase its value, competitiveness and positioning. In pursuing this objective, Fondazione Fiera Milano also works hard to ensure the sustainable growth of Milan’s exhibition network.
3. Accelerator of Knowledge
Fondazione Fiera Milano disseminates knowledge in the conventions industry as well is in major sectors of Italy’s economy through its: Study Centre, Historical Archive, Fiera Milano Academy, Corporate Communications and Institutional Relations.
Furthermore, as part of its strategic goals for cultural and artistic development, Fondazione Fiera Milano’s Acquisition Fund of contemporary artworks (established in 2012) for the miart art fair supports and publicises its art collection, which currently comprises approximately one hundred art works, all of which can be viewed online.
4. Supporter of the Third Sector
The Foundation supports and promotes local and social cohesion through a charity model aimed at reducing inequality and promoting local inclusion. To promote the common good, Fondazione Fiera Milano supports charity drives that have a tangible impact on society, while always operating according to the principles of lawfulness, sustainability, an enterprise culture and sector advocacy.
During the past two years, Fondazione Fiera Milano has stayed faithful to its mission of supporting local areas and communities by standing side by side with local citizens and institutions in the fight against COVID-19. First, the Foundation set up the Fiera Hospital, which took in 530 patients suffering serious complications - funded entirely from private donations. Then, it set up two vaccination centres in the Portello district and at Palazzo delle Scintille, which between them have applied more than 2,500,000 doses of the vaccine.
Following the outbreak of the Russia-Ukraine crisis, Fondazione Fiera Milano – in total synergy with Fondazione Progetto Arca Onlus – has launched a series of humanitarian initiatives to support Ukrainian refugees.
The Fondazione Fiera Milano Historical Archive preserves the history of Milan’s fairgrounds and its fair through the documentation produced by the Fair Board ever since 1920, the year the first Milan Fair was held. Its posters, photographs, newspapers, books, footage, and various documentary collections tell the many and various stories of all the exhibitor companies, visitors, sponsors, and workers at the fair.
All lined up, the documents surpass a kilometre in length. The major historical importance of the Archive has been formally recognized by the Archival Superintendency of the Lombardy Region, as notified on February 1st, 2005.
Fondazione Fiera Milano is running a fully self-funded campaign to digitize and catalogue the documentary and photographic collections held by the Historical Archive. To date, more than twenty five thousand catalogue files can be accessed, for a total of forty thousand digital objects.
The Fondazione Fiera Milano Historical Archive is also the driving engine for the project PROSPETTIVA Archivi, promoted together with Afip International and La Triennale di Milano. The aim of the project is to preserve the archives of major Italian photographers and unlock access for the greater public to thousands of pictures, all digitized and catalogued according to international standards.
The Historical Archives of Fondazione Fiera Milano are also a partner in various initiatives:
- Museimpresa—Italian Corporate Archives and Museums Association, which since 2001 has promoted and brought together companies that have chosen to leverage culture as value added to their companies.
- Corporate Archives Portal, a specific area in the National Archival System (SAN), conceived and promoted by the Directorate-General for Archives (DGA) with a view to preserving the historical archives of public and private enterprises in Italy.
- Rete Fotografia, an association offering space for engagement and learning for people in the photography sector.
- ANAI—Italian National Archives Association, which promotes studies and initiatives to further the cultural role of archivists, to expand relations between archive experts and enthusiasts, and to preserve our archival heritage and unlock its value. In addition, Fondazione Fiera Milano has been a member of GIAI — Italian Corporate Archivists’ Group since 2014.