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Corporate cultural responsibility: an extra lever for sustainable development

Corporate cultural responsibility: an extra lever for sustainable development
An aerial view of Biella
08 Feb 21

The Sella group historical archive joins Museimpresa: this Association brings together museums and archives belonging to Italian historical companies. Established in 2001, Museimpresa is a unique network at European level, aiming at: aggregating corporate culture leads through the creation of a system of company archives and museums, disseminating quality standards, fostering the concept of business cultural responsibility, as a lever of sustainable development, and sharing the economic, social and civil culture.

The joining of the Sella group archive resulted in Museimpresa reaching the important milestone of 100 members, confirming that, as president Antonio Calabrò said, "to start again, we must focus on the cultural and entrepreneurial heritage of our country. Keeping in mind the collective memory of Italian companies is a prerequisite to achieving this".

The Sella group historical archive will enrich the history and memory of this important association, with that of a banking company with almost five centuries of family business history, established and raised in the Biella textile district: one of the main triggers of the Italian industrial revolution. Today, this same banking group is writing the pages of a new great revolution, the digital and fintech one.

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Established in 2013, the Sella group historical archive contains documents and assets telling the development of the banking group, which in 140 years has evolved from a banking company in the form of a simple company: the Gaudenzio Sella & C, to a banking group consisting of a full range of several entities engaged from the most traditional sectors to the most advanced finance. A story that has always had innovation at its centre understood as customer service, and where Banca Sella and the entire Sella group have always been pioneers of innovation. From a new concept of placing Treasury Bills to the adoption of the "one-stop-shop". From the replacement of the old conception of a simple cashier to the introduction of consultancy. From the first internet stock trading to the first e-commerce transactions in Europe, up to fintech, open banking, and the open innovation ecosystems.

With approximately 450 linear meters of documentation, the Sella group historical archive is composed as follows: an ancient fund from the establishment of the bank in 1886 to 1937, when it became a joint-stock company and a "Banca Sella" fund, from that date onwards. All this, in addition to archives of the banks incorporated over time and of other Group companies. Overall, the Sella group Archive collects about 1,300 objects, including a rare example of an Enigma machine (read the dedicated article), used in the 1930s to encrypt interbank messages and then adopted during the Second World War by the German army (and decrypted by the Allies); a photographic archive describing the Group's events, personalities, work environments and sponsorships over time; a library of about 4,000 volumes, including the "Commerce Library" gathering historical books used by the bank as work tools between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.