Protom acquires Brazil’s Ambra Solutions


The purchase is the result of careful scouting made possible by SIMEST financing, which enabled the Group to open a commercial base in the country. Since the end of 2017, the company is in Elite, a programme run by Italian stock exchange operator Borsa Italiana for firms with high potential.

Advanced engineering and information technology group Protom is acquiring the Brazilian company Ambra Solutions, a firm working in the aerospace and automotive sectors. Ambra’s headquarters are in São José dos Campos, a technological pole and site of the biggest aerospace hub of Latin America. Its annual turnover is 2.5 million euros. A 3-million-euro investment plan is supporting the acquisition.

Protom, which reported revenue of 20 million euros in 2017, has flanked its historic headquarters in Naples with offices in Milan, Toulouse in France, and in Brazil. The company is working with big players from the engineering, aviation, railway and automotive sectors such as Leonardo, Superjet, Piaggio Aerospace, Airbus, FCA, ATR, Hitachi Rail Italy and Rolls Royce.

Leading up to Protom’s expansion operation, financing was provided by SIMEST – a company that constitutes the export and internationalisation arm of the CDP Group along with SACE. This made it possible for the firm to open a commercial base in Brazil and undertake a phase of careful and efficient scouting.

The push toward growth abroad by the group run by President Fabio De Felice is increasingly strong. A few months ago, it joined Elite, the programme run by Italian stock exchange operator Borsa Italiana for companies with very high potential, promoted in Italy by business association Confindustria. The aim is to support its growth course linked to innovation and internationalisation.

“Brazil is a country with very high potential, which is picking up strongly after years of crisis and economic instability,” Fabio De Felice explained. “In particular, the technological district of São José is an excellence recognised at the global level in the sphere of IT and aerospace and many highly innovative companies insist on having a presence here, above all Embraer, which has its biggest production site here. For Protom, positioning ourselves here is a goal with strong strategic value.”

“Ambra caught our attention due to the compatibility of the services it offered with the know-how and skills we possess,” said Giuliano Di Paola, country manager for Protom in Brazil. “A dual benefit will spring from this meeting: Protom will be able to enter in contact with the historical clients of Ambra, companies of great significance in the world of transport engineering such as Embraer, Mercedes, Avibras, Safran and UTC-Goodrich; at the same time, the new and broader competencies introduced by Protom will make it possible to widen the offering and benefit from the opportunities of a strongly recovering market like the Brazilian one.”

Protom’s current business is based on two technical lines: Information Technology, geared toward the realisation of projects, products and services with high added value in the digital transformation field, and Advanced Engineering, focused on transport engineering.

The latter, strengthened with the acquisition of a branch of the company of Piaggio Aero Industries, has developed a strong orientation toward the aerospace sector. The division is characterised by the “Integrated & Make it Work” approach, and the presence of high quality and unique skills, both in the sphere of structures as well as in systems. These are seen in the technicians and engineers of the team, who come alongside an elevated capacity of team working, experiences developed within the organisations of several original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).

These characteristics have made Protom a qualified partner in all the phases of the product life cycle (PLM Approach) that require engineering support, allowing them furthermore to win seven projects within Clean Sky 2. This is the European programme that aims for the planning and development of aircraft that are increasingly less polluting and more efficient from the energy point of view, and that lies within the framework of the Horizon 2020 plan.

The continuous and constant dialogue among these areas, combined with the decades of experience in programme and project management, is the foundation of the company’s capacity to pursue its own mission: being a “change manager” for its own clients, capable of providing products and services that can support them in the planning and realisation of strategic changes.

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