We are deeply saddened to report the death of our co-founder and honorary Chairman, Mr Wolfgang Baumann, who has passed away peacefully, aged 83, in the presence of his wife Francesca in Cavaion Veronese.

Having founded the business in 1969 with his brother Rolf and technical director Adolfo Gazza, Mr Baumann helped to spread the sideloader concept throughout the world. He was a valued member of the community, choosing the location of the factory, becoming the town’s main employer for many years. His social commitment, development of the town twinning with Bad Aibling, and his commercial activities, including establishing a local co-operative bank, helped to shape Cavaion and the surrounding area.

He travelled extensively in the 1980s, forging contacts with many of our current customers and distributors. In 1986 he received the Order of Merit for Labour and was made an honorary citizen of Cavaion Veronese in 2001. Hundreds of employees came to appreciate his humanity, attention to detail and love of work. Mr Baumann personally appointed much of the current Baumann senior management before stepping back from day-to-day involvement after more than 40 years at the helm. He continued to take a keen interest in the business, recently discussing this year’s results over the Christmas period.

Baumann Srl managing director and president of the board of directors, Dr. Klaus Pirpamer, said Mr Baumann was an inspiration to everyone at the business and always saw the welfare and wellbeing of his staff as his main concern.

Said Klaus: “He was an inspirational business leader, for both customers and employees, and believed very strongly in developing the talents of his staff members. Their welfare was his overriding concern and he saw them as part of the Baumann family. He never forgot how the community took him into their hearts and took great steps to instil the spirit of community, innovation and developmental strength which we still hold dear today. He also took immense pride from the success of the business that carried his name and will be greatly missed. Our condolences and thoughts are with Francesca, his many friends and family.”

A service will be held in Cavaion and a special commemoration will follow in Germany.