A 40-year journey

1983-2023: this year Intercomp celebrates its 40 years of activity, 40 years of computer design and manufacturing: a period spanning an era, full of innovations, historical changes and fascinating new challenges.

 

  • But how was the company born?
  • What was the entrepreneurial vision that made it possible to create a company that has been designing and producing computer hardware for four decades?
  • What are the challenges for the future?

 

Below we will answer all these questions, telling the story of the company with the words of the founders, interesting stories, memorabilia and vintage photos.

Intercomp logos
Intercomp logo

Our history

The founders of the multinational technology corporations have always told us that every company operating in the IT hardware sector should have taken its first steps in the garage of one of the founders.

And Intercomp was also born this way. From a far-sighted vision by Diego Carcereri, Domenico Giacomin and Gianfranco Zanotti, right in a garage in San Pietro in Cariano in Valpolicella, Province of Verona, back in 1983, in a period of technological development in which everything seemed possible.

Starting as manufacturers of electronic boards and compatible PCs, our company came to design and produce its own MS-DOS compatible Personal Computer as early as 1984.

Then begins the design and production of own-brand devices dedicated to the office world, both PCs and all the main parts. The first contracts were signed immediately with companies such as Microsoft and Intel®, of which we are still today technological partners, closely linked by years of excellent collaborations.

Also worth mentioning is the collaboration with the historic Olivetti, for which Intercomp has produced office devices for many years, and which still represents a point of reference for Italian entrepreneurship today.

Over the years the company has faced various changes of headquarters (first in Arbizzano, then in the Industrial Zone in Bussolengo) with constant doubling of spaces and staff, transforming in 1986 from S.r.l. to S.p.A.

In 1990 the new owned headquarters was inaugurated, where Intercomp expanded considerably, earning its own space in the hardware design and production sector and gradually introducing the line of products dedicated to the industrial world.

In 2013, however, Gianfranco left us.

 

It was a terrible blow for Intercomp. Like those boxers who take an opponent’s hit and who remain dazed and almost helpless for an instant that seems eternal, poised between the KO and the resumption of the match.

 

The hole left was and still is immense, but the company has chosen to resume its path, honouring and drawing inspiration from the diligence of its founders.

 

Like in that old garage in the ‘80s.

Gianfranco Zanotti

The protagonists

On the occasion of Intercomp’s 40th anniversary, we asked Diego Carcereri, Domenico Giacomin and Mirco Zanotti (son of Gianfranco) for some thoughts on the past, present and future of the company, as well as some interesting stories.

Diego Carcereri

Diego Carcereri

Domenico and I had opened a technical assistance laboratory in San Michele Extra (Verona district) for radio, TV, Hi-Fi, radio-TV bridges and electronics in general and we worked for several illustrious brands, such as Siemens, Akai, Aiwa and many others. We had also begun to approach the first Z80 microprocessor invented by the engineer Federico Faggin.

One day a radio amateur friend told us: “There is a person I know who deals with Apple computers, you absolutely must get to know each other”. It was Gianfranco. We all immediately understood that our future was to deal with PCs and we began to take an interest in everything that was happening in the world in relation to this sector.

On June 28, 1983, the company Intercomp S.r.l. was established, which produced Apple cards and then Apple II compatible computers, completing the offer with monitors and printers. When the IBM PC with MS-DOS came on the market, we decided to move our business there.

In 1987 in Nice we signed the license agreement with Microsoft, directly with the founder Bill Gates.

Product quality has been an essential parameter in our vision since the very beginning. Our goal was to provide intuitive solutions capable of guaranteeing continuity of operation, to differentiate ourselves from the rest of the market which was very often based only on price logics.

I want to fondly remember my friend Gianfranco, without him we wouldn’t be here to celebrate Intercomp’s 40th anniversary. Likewise, a dutiful thanks goes to our wives and families, who have always supported us all these years.

Domenico Giacomin

Domenico Giacomin

40 years have passed since the beginning of our adventure but I still remember well that on June 28, 1983, when the company’s constitution was signed, my legs were shaking.

If we had to retrace our entire history, it would take gigabytes of data.

However, I am convinced that the company has come to celebrate this milestone also thanks to the numerous collaborators who have joined Intercomp over the years. All these people have made an extraordinary diligence and a commendable sense of responsibility towards the company.

I believe the secret of our longevity and success is to believe in what we do, to stick together, to overcome difficulties together, to confront each other, to share strength and skills, even in the most difficult moments.

Among the interesting anecdotes I recall the participation in the 1991 San Remo Festival, as “insiders” in the supply of a computerized system, complete with a specially developed program, dedicated to the issuing of passes by the Festival accreditation office.

Finally, a special thought cannot be missing for those who represented the spark that allowed us to get where we are.

Thank you Gianfranco, you are always with us.

Mirco Zanotti with his father Gianfranco

Mirco Zanotti

“Change starts from the courage to want to change something, from the opportunity to be able to do it, from the will to want to do it and from the possibilities that people within the company can give you.”

In 40 years Intercomp has grown, it has changed continuously, it has transformed. Today we are a managerial company with women and men who bring knowledge, ideas, value and passion. These people create incentives to improve every day, supported by the curiosity to find new opportunities to design and produce new solutions.

Intercomp today is made up of these people who use their precious time with optimism; intelligent people capable of tackling and solving problems, people who don’t give up in the face of daily complications, whose focus is complete customer satisfaction.

Every day I see collaborators who are hungry, who never give up, who take nothing for granted, supported by the spirit that moves us towards improvement. Because we must improve ourselves.

Intercomp today is a close-knit team of people who share ideas, experiences and successes precisely with a view to continuous improvement and growth.

All of this therefore would not have been possible without all the collaborators who have supported Intercomp over the years.

All this would not have been possible without Diego – from whom I learned a lot, with his way of doing maybe grouch but which always hides a reflective and wise side that has often made me think about my choices – without Domenico – who with his passion, the desire, the continuous want to learn and discover has always feed the imagination that has allowed us to create our solutions – but also without the help of my father Gianfranco – who educated me both in life and at work making me understand how much it is important to respect people, tasks, roles and teaching me what work means.

Thanks to Sonia and Enrico, the second generation that advances within the Intercomp family, who manage to bring different but always interesting points of view.

Thanks to all the collaborators, without them we could not be here after 40 years.

Thanks to them we are aware that we can also celebrate the next 40 years.

40 years of computer design and manufacturing

In its 40 years of computer design and manufacturing, Intercomp has gone through all the eras related to the development of information technology, from the birth of the first PC up to the present day.

Over the years there have been countless changes, even epochal ones, that our company has managed to implement, continuously updating and increasing its experience, up to the present day.

To conclude this article, here is a gallery of images that includes “vintage” materials. Some of these objects, at the time the photo was taken, represented the cutting-edge technology then available.

They can make smile for their obsolescence, they can make emotional remembering the past years with nostalgia.

Certainly Intercomp does not forget its bright past, but treasures every experience to face the present and plan its future.

“We have always liked challenges and they are a constant incentive for all of us. If not, we would not have started designing and producing mainboards or creating an all-Italian Personal Computer when the market was dominated by American and Japanese companies.

We don’t know what tomorrow’s challenges will be, but I’m sure we’ll be ready to face them.”

Gianfranco Zanotti

Intercomp S.p.A.

Our success has its roots in the technical experience that we have acquired over the years and it is this experience that allows us to offer avant-garde Hardware solutions, both standard and made to measure, that are completely in line with customer requirements.

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