We are going to propose you the first part of the interview to Mr. Paduano, “Il Colle Degli Arcieri” ex owner. Last August, his property has been sold by Great Estate to an US couple: his love and passion for the farmhouse and the meeting with our Group.
Good morning Mr. Francesco. First of all, would you like to tell us something about your life?
I am 52 years old and I am an entrepreneur. During the time, I dealt with several tasks: from the consultancy to the managing of a handcraft business aimed to the production of titanium high-level bicycles. With my name, thanks to this activity, I created a very successful brand which is now known all over the world.
We attended some exhibition both in Japan and USA, being so able to sell many numbered frames (i.e. different customized frames). I created innovative products based on unique licences. Those products were then recognized by the market and copied by very important companies of the field.
The business was artisanal, so it suffered all the difficulties of this sector: during the time and because of the international competition, it was not able to develop as we hoped.
For this reason, we chose to do some investments into the real estate and tourism sectors. Right in this moment, the renovation project of “Il Colle Degli Arcieri” farmhouse begun: thanks to it and some other ruined properties dating back to 1600, we were finally able to realize an amazing structure.
To date, I deal with real estate investments and work as consultant for a private equity financial company in Milan. My educational path is merely financial: I took a degree in economy and a master in quantitative finance at the Bocconi University of Milan.
When did you purchase “Il Colle Degli Arcieri”?
The property has been purchased in 2003. The renovation started in 2004 and ended in 2007. After that, the touristic accommodation business named “La Collina di Casigliano” begun. Indeed, the original name of the property was “Podere la Collina”. It was created in 1681 for the Corsinis’ possessions safeguard: indeed, they depended on the Casigliano Castle.
How did you start the property renovation project? Is there something particular you would like to tell us about?
I would have tons of anecdotes to tell you about the renovation of this property!
At the beginning, the tower of the farmhouse was visible but opened to create a tobacco warehouse because of the many plantations of the area. One of the farmhouse sides was collapsed because of a landslide. I was amazed by the tower and the beauty of the landscape… I will always remember that moment: I was so excited that I decided to look for its owners. The property was not in the market but, after some researches, I finally reached Florence where I found princess Lucrezia Corsini, being so able to convince her to sell it.
The farmhouse did not have any water supply. For this reason, in order to bring to the property the water needed for the works, we had to realize an aqueduct of about 900 m. Moreover, having the Italian multinational energy company (Enel) refused to concede us electricity, we had to use several generating sets for the entire duration of the works.
So, in order to renovate this property, I created a construction company.
It was a very good experience: I dealt with the construction site first-hand and, together with an architect, we managed also the architectonical part of the project. Being the building located in a potentially unstable and seismic area, we had to detailly recover the foundations in order to give it a real security and stability. I also remember to have personally cleaned it stone by stone, brick by brick: a very hard work, but it worth it.
Moreover, we collected all the property historic and non-documents: we went into the Casigliano Castle to obtain every photo possible in order to understand in detail the ruined parts of the property.
We found the statistics about the property crops as well. At the end of this important work, we were finally able to reach a very high result (discover the property here).
Why did you and your wife decide to sell the farmhouse?
Once the renovation was done, our first idea was to move in there. Then, for some personal reasons, we had to change our minds. This is why we finally start the touristic accommodation business. Even if profitable, it became too difficult to manage in conjunction with my wife’s job and mine.
We know that between 2017 and 2018 you tried to sell the property through another agency, but without any result. Why do you think it happened?
Yes, our property was entered into the market after 2015. In my opinion, its asking price was not correct: since 2009, the decreasing of the prices was so rapid that made our old property asking one out of the market already. For me, the price decreasing was quicker than our price adaptation.
How did you discover the Group?
By chance. Indeed, my wife received – or, in any case, found – your name in an advertising banner. For us it is something accidental but, for you, it is also the result of your marketing investments.
Why, in September 2018, did you decide to entrust yourself to GE exclusively?
It was the consequence of my usual approach: I like to deeply study my speakers, get to know the partners. Then, if I understand or perceive a professionalism and a fair approach in people, I like to entrust myself to them: in this case, I wanted to give my trust to Stefano Petri. Precisely because of the respect I had for the investment he and his entire agency did towards my property, its estimate and marketing plans, I thought it was something correct to do.
Discover the second part of the interview to Mr. Francesco Paduano… soon on-line.