Who was responsible for making the Generali Group what it is today? What was the vision of the executives who led the company for expanding its business model, until it reached the Group’s current stature? Were there additional ambitions and abilities, which fired the imaginations of the executives and their trusted colleagues? This section provides details of the lives and work of those people in the company who were the catalyst to its national and global success. Among their number were executives, advisers and prominent political figures, but also artists and celebrated cultural figures.

Eugenio Scomparini, portrait of Marco Besso, oil on canvas (1877) / ph. Massimo Goina

The President of the Century

After a nearly century-long vacancy, the role of Chairman of Assicurazioni Generali was finally filled in 1909 by Marco Besso. Who was Marco Besso, and why was the title revived in the 20th century?

Strong-willed and multi-faceted, for half a century he was the key figure in Generali. “Here’s our irredentist!”, the department ...

Napoleone Giovanni Fiumi, Il viadotto, oil on canvas (1938)

Painting Between Policies

Working for Generali was a mixed blessing for several people gifted with artistic talent, who found the work either a source of inspiration or simply of financial stability: young writers, experienced poets, poor scholars or established painters. Well known or niche, and however talented as insurance brokers, they were able to marry their employment and ...

Luigi Sorio, Masino Levi, oil on canvas (late 19th century) / ph Massimo Goina

Masino Levi the Innovator: Generali’s Expert Executive

Frugal, foresighted and open-minded, Masino Levi (Ferrara 1795 – Trieste 1879) personified the age-old spirit of Generali in everything he did. A totemic man, Levi was a stabilising force in the company’s history, guiding it through turbulent times such as the wars of independence of the mid-19th century.

After a long time cutting his teeth as ...

Gino Parin, Daniele Francesconi, oil on canvas (late 1920s) / ph. Massimo Goina

Daniele Francesconi, Generali’s “Revolutionary” Secretary

“Bread lacks, the cholera deadlier grows / From the Lagoon Bridge, the white banner blows”. These immortal words, from the famous poem The White Flag on the Lagoon Bridge at Venice by the patriot and scholar Arnaldo Fusinato, attach a rhyming scheme to the story of the epic defence of the lagoon city by forces ...