Biography Philanthropists

Michele Ferrero

Michele Ferrero
Michele Ferrero.jpg
Born 26 April 1925
Died 14 February 2015 (aged 89)
Monte CarloMonaco
Residence Monte Carlo, Monaco[1]
Citizenship Italian
Occupation Owner of Ferrero SpA
Known for NutellaMon ChériKinder ChocolateFerrero RocherTic TacsKinder Eggs
Net worth Increase US$ 26.7 billion (May 2014)[1]
Spouse(s) Maria Franca Fissolo[2]
Children Pietro
Parent(s) Pietro Ferrero
Piera Cillario

Michele Ferrero (Italian pronunciation: [miˈkɛːle ferˈrɛːro]; 26 April 1925 – 14 February 2015) was an Italian entrepreneur. He owned the chocolate manufacturer Ferrero SpA, Europe’s second largest confectionery company (at the time of his death),[3] which he developed from the small bakery and café of his father in Alba, Piedmont. His first big success was adding vegetable oil to the traditional gianduja paste to make the popular spread, Nutella.[4]

Early life[edit]

Michele Ferrero was born on 26 April 1925 in Dogliani,[5] the son of Pietro Ferrero, who founded the Ferrero company, and his wife Piera Cillario.[2]


Ferrero joined the firm in 1949.[6]

He was the richest person in Italy, with a personal wealth of $26bn[1] surpassing Silvio Berlusconi in March 2008. In May 2014, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index listed Ferrero as the 20th richest person in the world.[7]

Ferrero’s brands include NutellaMon ChériKinder ChocolateFerrero RocherTic Tacs and Kinder Eggs.

From 1997, his sons, Giovanni Ferrero and Pietro Ferrero, co-led the company.[8][9] Pietro died on 18 April 2011, after an accident in South Africa.[10]Giovanni became the sole CEO.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Ferrero married Maria Franca Fissolo in 1962, and they had two sons together, Giovanni Ferrero and Pietro Ferrero Jr.[2]

He was a fervent Catholic. Ferrero visited the Lourdes shrine annually, and had a Madonna placed in every factory and office.[6] Ferrero died on 14 February 2015, at his home in Monte Carlo, Monaco. He was 89.[11][12] [13]

See also[edit]


  1. Jump up to:a b c “Michele Ferrero Forbes Profile”Forbes. March 9, 2011. Retrieved April 25, 2011.
  2. Jump up to:a b c “The Story of a Family”.
  3. Jump up^ Various (30 October 2015). Hachette Children’s Yearbook& Infopedia 2016. Hachette India. p. 37. ISBN 978-93-5195-041-7.
  4. Jump up^ “Sweet secrets”The Economist, p. 90, 21 February 2015
  5. Jump up^ “Michele Ferrero compie 85 anni” [Michele Ferrero turns 85]. Il Sole 24 Ore (in Italian). 25 April 2010.
  6. Jump up to:a b Hooper, John (28 October 2011). “Ferrero unwrapped: Italy’s secretive confectioner opens its doors”The Guardian. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  7. Jump up^ “Bloomberg Billionares Index”. Bloomberg LP. Archived from the original on December 14, 2012. Retrieved December 3, 2012.
  8. Jump up^ Ferrero SpA – Company History. Retrieved on 2011-11-03.
  9. Jump up^ Forbes. Retrieved on 2014-05-18.
  10. Jump up to:a b “Italian chocolate boss Ferrero dies in S. Africa accident”. 18 April 2011.
  11. Jump up^ La Stampa
  12. Jump up^ Rhodan, Maya (15 February 2015). “World’s Richest Candy Maker and Nutella Founder Died on Valentine’s Day”Time.
  13. Jump up^ “Cattedrale gremita per la Messa in memoria di Michele Ferrero – Gazzetta d’Alba – Dal 1882 il settimanale di Alba, Langhe e Roero” Retrieved 2016-05-19.