Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: October 22, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412956260 | Print ISBN: 9781412916523 | Online ISBN: 9781412956260| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
In 1961, a 22-year-old college dropout, Calisto Tanzi, inherited his family-owned prosciutto business, to which he added a pasteurizing facility in Parma, Italy, which was later to become known worldwide as Parmalat. It steadily grew into a diversified multinational dairy, beverage, and bakery company and one of Europe's most influential corporations. In 2002, Parmalat Finanziaria was the holding company of a group of more than 200 subsidiaries operating in 30 countries with assets of €10 billion and annual sales of €7.6 billon. More than 36,000 people were on its payroll. But in December 2003, the company was declared insolvent in one of the world's largest corporate bankruptcy scandals, and Tanzi himself was alleged to have engaged in financial fraud and money laundering in a case that rivals Enron and WorldCom in notoriety. After the 2003 shock of unexpected bankruptcy at Parmalat, it was later uncovered that the company had kept ...