In order to become familiar with the new work context and get a better understanding of the textile care market, I curiously started to look through the rich archive of Detergo magazine. Detergo was founded in 1952. The year of the foundation was framed, until a few months ago, by letter D of the brand name on the Cover page (now, it is written right under the heading of the magazine), placed like a flag and pride of the glorious history.
1952, what an extraordinary year. Elisabeth II, the Princess of York ascends the throne and initiates, after the Victorian age in the UK, another historical period destined to last more than any other 1952 is also the year in which The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), established by the Treaty of Paris, becomes valid. It traces the beginning of a more organic and consolidated European Community that today, needless to say, appears to be in painful difficulties as far as reforms go. Browsing through the filed issues of the magazine, I look back at the history marked by numerous stages of the evolution heading towards progress, which stands out on every page. Washing and ironing machines catch my attention while they highlight the epic times of a “sector” by giving a push and uniquely contributing to the development of the made in Italy industry, and to what was later emphatically defined as an “economic miracle”. The yellow pages of the old volumes are now reporting on chlorinated hydrocarbons used in dry-cleaning: Trichloroethylene and the “carbon tet” (Carbon tetrachloride) that, over years, left room to a more “ductile” type of cleaning: PERC (perchloroethylene) which is still widely used today, and only in part, has it been replaced by natural solvents. 1950s, the fruitful years when the urge to grow coincided with the post war reconstruction and with the thrust given by the Marshall plan. The basis for a spectacular economic growth had been set. It reached a peak in the 1960s and transformed the Belpaese from an underdeveloped country, with its economy based mainly on agriculture, into a world leading economy. Salary growth rates broke a record varying from 6% to 7% in those years. The figures were actually commented on and praised by Mr. John F. Kennedy, the President of the USA, during an official dinner party with the Italian President, Mr. Antonio Segni. The significant economic expansion of those years was undoubtedly determined by, first of all, the exploitation of the opportunities deriving from the favorable international trends and the initiative, resourcefulness and skills of the forward-looking Italian entrepreneurs. Those outstanding growth rates dropped if not disappeared completely in the dim and distant past in Europe and, in particular, Italy.
Let us however, concentrate on present times and the publication. It is the history of the magazine (the background of which we have shortly reviewed), the motivation and passion for this work that encourage us to imagine an editorial product that, apart from capitalizing the value of the good job done here, would push us to think it over, improve it and align it to the evolution of times.
An important role is to be assigned to the digital channel and its development both in terms of the content and information accessibility of the magazine as it represents a clear and unique value, also from the point of view of economics, for all the textile care sector operators.
A specialized, technical magazine like ours will definitely keep close contacts, share and exchange ideas with the associates, readers and subscribers, and all those representing the market of reference by trying to meet and interpret their needs, and by telling them all about the excellence and professionality that make part of this dynamic and variegated market sector. We will try to create a publication that “supports the sector operators” and that is able to face the reality expressing an unrestricted and disenchanted outlook, free from any ideological prejudice.
I would like to give special thanks to the outgoing Chief Editor of Detergo, Mr. Stefano Ferrio for his work, and to Detergo magazine staff for the professionality and warm welcome, to the Associazione Fornitori Aziende Manutenzione dei Tessili association and Expo Detergo for the trust they granted me.
Enjoy the read!
Detergo Magazine April 2019