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Natuzzi SpA Message Board

  • tim_stabosz tim_stabosz Sep 28, 2013 12:30 PM Flag

    These results are atrocious, and NTZ management should be ashamed of itself.

    Why are they pandering to the Italian unions? Why are they talking about moving more production TO Italy, instead of moving production OUT of Italy? If Natuzzi's competitors, operating in the same region of Italy, are paying a FRACTION of Natuzzi's wage costs, why isn't Natuzzi talking about IMMEDIATE 10-20% wage cuts for Italian workers?

    I'm convinced this management team doesn't have what it takes. Pasquale is operating this company as a PUBLIC CHARITY. He's afraid of hurting the FEELINGS of Italian unions. They totally ignore, in their earnings press release, the WHITE ELEPHANT in the room. That is beyond disturbing; it represents a breach of fiduciary duty to the outside shareholders!

    They are focused on coming out with new products, as if this is going to be their salvation and deliverance, when the real problem that Natuzzi has is a COST problem, first and foremost. And they remain in STARK DENIAL over that problem.

    There is NO business mandate for Natuzzi to be producing ANY furniture in Italy. (Sales of their high end Natuzzi Italia brand continue to collapse in Italy itself...because it's overpriced!!)) There is no obligation to disgusting and repulsive conceps such as "economic nationalism," or "nativism," when you are a GLOBAL company, and a GLOBAL brand. This attitude of NTZ management is totally "see-through".....and the parochial loyalties are a 100% betrayal of management's obligations as fiduciaries to outside shareholders.

    They refuse to see the writing on the wall, and, as it stands now, it's going to result in the eventual destruction of a once great brand. The fact that the Natuzzi familiy owns 60% of the company shows the horrendous situation where you have a controlled entity....where the controlling person has his head buried in the sand, is living totally in in the glory of the past...and is afraid to STAND UP TO PEOPLE.

    I feel betrayed as a shareholder....and as a 3% owner of the company. Management is craven.

    SortNewest  |  Oldest  |  Most Replied Expand all replies
    • To save you time... it's all negative and all down hill. No need to read the 5 pages or so of the release. Their best shot is to develop a new armchair called no other than "re-vive" which should actually how this company should be called.

    • Tim, where are they talking about moving production to Italy...I didnt see it. Sometime during the next few months we should hear more about their Italian factory negotiations regarding number of workers and wages.

      #$%$ quarter....but not very surprising.

      CC should be interesting...hope you ask some good tough questions.

      All in, the stock is still very cheap at these levels, and a dip lower would be a buying opp, imo.


      • 2 Replies to fabulouspoodle
      • ...I know it was tough because of the technical and language problems.....but great job in focused and relentless questioning. Natuzzi could really use a translator for Pasquale....I mean he speaks English fine, but he just doesn't understand the questions.

      • If you've kept up with the stories in the Italian press, the last several weeks, that is what they are talking about. (Shifting some production from Romania back to Italy.) It seems totally DELUDED to me....like this company exists FOR the Italian people. That's absurd! And a betrayal of the broader shareholder base.

        I certainly agree the stock is cheap, and the balance sheet strength provides downside protection....but I'm not sure what exactly is going to turn this company around, either, since the CEO doesn't seem to have any courage to face the truth....and he apparently has a board of directors that just "goes along" with his own fears.....and his own whim-worshipping hope that things will just magically "get better" at Natuzzi....with an overpaid Italian labor force.

        Loyalty to producing in Italy as a "given" is an outrage, considering the losses we have sustained here. Mr. Natuzzi built a company, and built his own fortune, hand-in-hand with the working class of the furniture producing regions of Italy, and he hates to "let that go." But continuing on living in the past is a recipe, and denying that there are real needs for WAGE REDUCTIONS (or moving more production OUT of Italy), is a recipe for eventual BANKRUPTCY. Certainly no time soon, but in several years, that is exactly where we are headed. Not only does our bloated cost structure prevent us from being profitable in the here and now, but it is causing a slow down, as we continue to LOSE MARKET SHARE, because the consumer is going elsewhere, and is not willing to pay a humongous premium for the NTZ brand name any more.

        The company needs to be SOLD, or taken private by Mr. Natuzzi himself. Although I'm not sure, with his spinelessness, vis a vis the unions, and the insular managerial structure he has maintained, any lender would have any confidence in financing him, frankly.

    • Tim, first and with all due respect, how or why did you acquire a 3% stake in a unionized company IN ITALY, no less.

      "He's afraid of hurting the FEELINGS of Italian unions."

      I do not know you but perhaps you have little experience with unions, or unions in latin countries. I, instead, am very familiar with them having lived 30 years in a South American country. Unions -not always and not everywhere- could be singled out as the one element in a company that has the potential of driving it to the ground. Unions do not get hurt. Instead, they can hurt. Both financially and physically. We do not know what's behind the board or the family's decisions but sometimes a bankruptcy is one way to bring unions down to their knees. This is a complex investment you have a stake in.

      Other than this and besides the very real "cost" issue, management seems vague in their solutions while acknowledging some of the problems. It's hard to see how a new armchair will radically change anything here.

      As for a family owning 60% of the business, do you know what other investments they have? Do you know if they own bonds on the company's debt? Do you know if they are shorting their shares? Sometimes large family ownership does not translate into a direct, straightforward commitment to all shareholders. Good luck with your investment.

      • 2 Replies to rosen62
      • ...I know it was tough because of the technical and language problems.....but great job in focused and relentless questioning. Natuzzi could really use a translator for Pasquale....I mean he speaks English fine, but he just doesn't understand the questions.

      • Their singing the "glory" of the new arm chair is utterly representative of their denial. They're going to "grow" the company into success, on behalf of their Italian union "patrons," instead of immediately rightsizing the cost structure. It's almost as if the people that work at the company OWN it, 100%. But that's absurd. The capital of the company is owned by its shareholders.

        The scary thing is that, with Pasquale owning 60%, and his seemingly, as a 75 or so year old, being so worried and focused on his legacy, and as someone who "cares about people," he just seems willing to me, to take the company "off the cliff," on behalf of being a "hero" for his fellow countrymen. But their wage demands are outrageous, and that is evidenced in Natuzzi's HORRENDOUS financial results. The old days are OVER....but Natuzzi is TINKERING at the margins....head firmly buried in the sand. I've rarely seen a company so steeped in DENIAL.

        There is simply NO mandate to be producing any furniture in Italy any more. That's the reality that the company should be confronting. Insanely, they are talking, instead, about moving production from Romania TO Italy. That's CRAZY!!

        If Pasquale Natuzzi wants to continue with this cowardice, and this nonsense, and 7 years in a row of financial losses, let him do it on his own dime, and TAKE THE COMPANY PRIVATE. Then he can burn through all the remaining equity for all I care, drive the company into the ground, and let a Chinese outfit pick up the carcass out of bankruptcy. It seems, in Mr. Natuzzi's mind, perversely, that that is how he plans to "protect his legacy." (Apparently, the pressures from Italian unions are just insurmountable, psychologically, when someone like Mr. Natuzzi is so concerned about seeing himself as "caring and concerned," and a "good man.")

        These situations are tragic. It is exactly the thing that drove General Motors into bankruptcy.

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