Italy's Piaggio Group, which owns the Aprilia, Moto Guzzi and Vespa brands, has secured a loan of 60 million Euros, which will fund the two-wheeler group's research, development and innovation efforts going forward. Two banks, the Banca Monte Dei Paschi di Siena (MPS) and the Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) offered the loan in equal parts to the Piaggio Group. The loan was provided by the two organisations to provide liquidity and support the resumption of production activities in Italy in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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According to a press statement, the new line of credit will support the Piaggio Group's planned investments in research and development of innovative technological and product solutions in areas such as active and passive safety and sustainability. Developments will focus in particular on reducing the consumption and emissions of internal combustion engines, and are expected to strengthen Piaggio's range of scooters, motorcycles and commercial vehicles.
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The two banks make it clear that the intention is to help companies in Italy resume regular business after the coronavirus shutdown. Piaggio was forced to shut down on March 22, 2020 after the Italian government announced a countrywide lockdown. Business has since resumed as the Italian economy limps back towards normalcy, but it seems Piaggio wants to make up for lost time and concentrate efforts on developing new technologies and new products for the future. Piaggio's recent patent filings reveal a new leaning three-wheeler, as well as active aero winglets, which will possibly debut in future Aprilia motorcycles.
With its headquarters in Pontedera, Italy, the Piaggio Group had net income of nearly 50 million Euros in 2019. The latest infusion of liquidity is bound to accelerate both new product development, as well as new and more hi-tech and future-ready technologies for Piaggio's future two-wheelers and three-wheelers.