Case | HBS Case Collection | December 1997 (Revised February 2002)

Franco Bernabe at ENI (A)

by Linda A. Hill, Jennifer Suesse and Mara Willard


Describes Franco Bernabe's ascent to leadership at ENI, Italy's national oil and gas company. Illustrates Bernabe's early career experiences in academia, as the chief economist at Fiat. Then describes his arrival at ENI during the early 1980s, where he became first the assistant to the CEO and then director of strategic planning. In 1992, Bernabe was unexpectedly appointed by the Italian government to head the company's privatization process. Bernabe was only 42 years old at the time. Immediately after his appointment, Bernabe dealt with many crises, including Italy's Clean Hands corruption scandals, which implicated his entire executive team. This case focuses on his first year as CEO.

Keywords: Leadership Style; Personal Development and Career; Management Teams; Management Style; Strategic Planning; Crisis Management; Privatization; Italy;


Hill, Linda A., Jennifer Suesse, and Mara Willard. "Franco Bernabe at ENI (A)." Harvard Business School Case 498-034, December 1997. (Revised February 2002.)