The Slovenia Times

Ivo Boscarol honoured for lifetime achievement in management

Ivo Boscarol, the founder and former CEO and owner of aircraft maker Pipistrel, wins the Manager Association's lifetime achievement award. Photo: Bor Slana/STA

Ivo Boscarol, the Ajdovščina-based entrepreneur who sold his successful ultra-light aircraft maker last year, has been honoured by the Manager Association for his lifetime achievement in management.

Under his leadership Pipistrel became a leading global maker of ultralight aircraft. Boscarol put not only the company but also Slovenia on the global map, the association said as it presented him with the award at its annual meeting in Ljubljana on 25 January.

"Boscarol turned the Pipistrel brand into a synonym for boldness, innovation and business initiative ... His disruptive innovation, big heart and empathy have established him not only as an exceptional entrepreneur but also as an extraordinary individual," it added.

Boscarol and his daughter sold Pipistrel to US industrial conglomerate Textron for €218 million in April 2022. They remain minority owners in the company.

They allocated part of the proceeds, €25 million, to the Ajdovščina municipality to build a new community health centre, a helicopter rescue centre, and for the greening of public spaces.

The entrepreneur also donated €1.47 million to the Slovenian Firefighting Association to thank the firefighters who battled the wildfire in Kras in July 2022, the country's largest blaze to date.

"His actions have make him a role model of innovation, breakthrough, success and excellent leadership," the Manager Association said.

"I'm deeply honoured as well as a bit surprised to have been chosen by the Manger Association for this accolade. I have never been a member of the association and my leadership style may have been somewhat different from the standard in this cruel business world of ours," said Boscarol.

Through his work in the past 33 years, he said he proved success was possible in the long run by respecting basic human values even if profit did not come first.

Since selling his aircraft company, Boscarol has been venturing into other lines of business. He has bought the Kolosej cinema multiplex at the Ljubljana BTC commercial district at a bankruptcy estate auction, and purchased a 10-hectare plot nearby from the bread and pasta company Žito.

He has also acquired a small stake in the savings banks Primorska Hranilnica, which he is planning to increase further, according to media reports.

The Manager Association also presented the Artemida award for women managers who broke the glass ceiling. The winners were Tanja Blatnik, director-general of the Romanian company Euroins Asigurare, and Babett Stapel, the managing director of airport operator Fraport Slovenija.

Primož Zelenšek, the director of start-up Chipolo, was declared the Young Manager of 2022.

The awards were presented at the annual meeting of the Manager Association.


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