Moto Guzzi motorcycles
Moto Guzzi is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer, the oldest European manufacturer in continuous motorcycle production and, since 2004, one of seven brands owned by Piaggio.
Established in 1921 in Mandello del Lario, Italy, the company is noted for its central historic role in Italy's motorcycling manufacture, its prominence worldwide in motorcycle racing, and a series of industry innovations – including the first motorcycle center stand, wind tunnel and eight-cylinder engine.
Moto Guzzi was conceived by two aircraft pilots and their mechanic serving in the Corpo Aeronautico Militare (the Italian Air Corp, CAM) during World War I: Carlo Guzzi, Giovanni Ravelli and Giorgio Parodi. Assigned to the same Miraglia Squadron based outside Venice,the three became close, despite coming from different socio-economic backgrounds. The trio envisioned creating a motorcycle company after the war.
Guzzi would engineer the motor bikes, Parodi (the son of wealthy Genovese ship-owners) would finance the venture, and Ravelli (already a famous pilot and motorcycle racer) would promote the bikes with his racing prowess. Guzzi and Parodi (along with Parodi's brother) formed Moto Guzzi in 1921. Ravelli, ironically, had died just days after the war's end in an aircraft crash and is commemorated by the eagle's wings that form the Moto Guzzi logo.
Carlo Guzzi and Giorgio Parodi, along with Giorgio's brother Angelo, created a privately held silent partnership "Società Anonima Moto Guzzi" on 15 March 1921, for the purpose of (according to the original articles of incorporation) "the manufacture and the sale of motor cycles and any other activity in relation to or connected to metallurgical and mechanical industry".
The formation of the company hinged on an initial loan of two thousand Lira from the Parodis' father, Emanuele Vittorio, which he gave on 3 January 1919, offering the balance of the loan upon his review of the project's progress:
"Dear Giorgio, you can let both your partners know that I will offer you for your first 1,500 or 2,000 Lire. Although with the condition that the sum, under no circumstances, shall be increased. Likewise, I reserve the right to supervise your progress before giving my agreement to this project."
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