Unical AG S.p.A.

The “Heating” Heart of Sustainability



Diletta Golzi

Diletta Golzi

Natia Marena

Natia Marena

Giorgia Piacentini

Giorgia Piacentini

Gaia Ruggenenti

Gaia Ruggenenti

andrea baldo

andrea baldo


Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)


Riccardo Torelli

Riccardo Torelli

Global Goals

7. Affordable and Clean Energy 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth 9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure 11. Sustainable Cities and Communities 12. Responsible Consumption and Production

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Unical’s distinctive characteristic, born 50 years ago from the pen and mind of its founder, has always been innovation through the smart use of various sources of energy and fuels, with an even stronger focus on sustainable sources in recent years. Due to this, one of the relevant suits in the company is the Research and Development department that embodies the soul of the company: aiming to reach a sustainable future guided by our collective responsible actions today.


One of Unical’s main objectives is researching increasingly innovative technologies. As a testament to this, it has already amounted to the staggering number of 50 registered patents which represent a truly distinctive element.

The company is highly focused in the development of advanced technology because advanced technology is needed to create the conditions for sustainable heating products which is a unique feature of Unical. It cannot be omitted that these products are still considered to be polluting, but because of this the company has been investing copious amounts of time and resources in research & development to change that. Unical, in a conjoined effort, was amongst the first companies in Europe to propose a major innovation: the first condensing boiler, which further solidifies the company’s commitment to innovation. Talking about this specific innovation, the CEO Sergio Fiorani, reports that "the company has designated a highly professional product, capable of heating large structures such as hospitals and condominiums, through the optimization of the consumption of energy in every season of the year with low emissions.”

Furthermore, for some years now, the organization has been creating more and more products with a heavy orientation towards increasing their efficiency and ecologic impact. In fact, the company is focusing on projects that can work with the use of hydrogen. Although today this resource is still not easily accessible and distributable, the company expects in the coming years to render this revolutionary source more and more accessible to the public. This will hopefully lead to a large use of hydrogen within the organization and in the market world.

The company has shown to be very committed to a proactive attitude in the field of innovation, even when it comes to design. It was actually the first company to win in 60 years of competition, the prize “Compasso D’Oro” with a boiler. This product is characterized by an extremely technological heating system but still pays homage to the company’s and country’s tradition of “fare belle cose fatte bene” (“making well made things satisfying to look at”). It respects the aesthetically harmonious lines and feelings of a family house while aiming to be completely perceived as a part of the home environment. It allows more technical control of the device itself without having to give up the flavor of luxury.

The “Heating” Heart of Sustainability

Picture representation of Poetry n°6


Unical has been consistent with its vision for all the 50 years of operations, with a particular drive towards self-betterment and to better the environment by combining technology, quality, and innovation without neglecting the charm of the “made in Italy” tradition.

The reasons behind this strong drive can be identified in the collective commitment to pursue innovative objectives concerning the implementation of concrete actions that can guarantee a better future for the next generations.

The founder, Giovanni Jahier, is an engineer with an unmistakable talent in the arts of poetry and painting. He decided to introduce his new products about 20 years ago at a major trade show through the lenses of his environmentally aware poems and paintings “which was a great shock that opened a very important discussion” recalls the CEO.

Here we report one of his emblematic poems, which exhorts society to adopt sustainable behaviors to face the already evident symptoms of environmental degradation. This poem is also linked to a picture created by the founder himself, which is its representation:

Poetry n°6 (Original:Italian)

Uomo intellettuale,

tocca a te smuovere le coscienze.

Dalla tua finestra aperta sul mondo tu vedi già i sintomi del futuro degrado ambientale,

e la costante inadeguatezza dei comportamenti umani alle reali situazioni.

Se tu scrivi,

se tu parli,

se tu esisti,

spicca il volo.

Poetry n°6 (Translated from Italian)


It is up to you to rouse consciences.

From your window open to the world, you already see the symptoms of the future environmental decline and the constant inadequacy of human behaviors in real situations.

If you write,

If you speak,

If you exist,

Take flight.

Overall impact

Fossil fuels are still needed by heating systems and as Fiorani said: "It will take time before energy can be produced only through totally renewable sources, however the story of Unical starts precisely from making this type of technology: making technology means producing the least possible emissions and therefore less pollution and in the end, giving the least possible negative impact on the environment”.

The implementation of these technologies for the development of new sustainable heating systems leads towards the elimination of non-renewable sources. Nowadays the only options, according to the CEO and his team, are aimed at the use of hydrogen, solar and electricity. “It is a very difficult challenge. However, if a company manages to reduce emissions by a good percentage, it has already done something very important; achieving a positive impact on the environment” says Fiorani.

Since the company's foundation, their focus has always been on the environment: “Unical is and does sustainability”; this green attitude can be identified in short and long term benefits.

For the short term, the company has several products with energy level A+. It’s one of the only, if not the only, company in the sector that has achieved this energy efficiency while still managing to maintain a competitive selling price. Another result with a great short-term impact is the recent "change of the guard", which took place over the course of a year and a half. This represents not only the company's spirit of innovation, but also the trust placed in young people and the company's commitment to educating the next generations. The declaration of the CEO Fiorani is a strong testimony: “We are strongly convinced that investing, and having invested, in the psychological well-being of our human resources has paid off over time; humanity sees itself in times of need”. This is also confirmed by the respect shown and recognized by the company's competitors.

“We are working to ensure our employees have facilities for their homes and consequently for the environment, through this project the employees will have a heating machine connected directly to a solar system which, by capturing the sun, will supply energy to work the heating even without the use of gas, in this way there will also be benefits in the long term” says Fiorani. His company and his team want to be pioneers of the business and to fight for the increasingly widespread use of hydrogen as a source of renewable energy. In addition to the short-term benefits already listed, the CEO hopes to be able to influence other sectors in a significant way as well. In particular, he mentions the automotive sector, one of the main sources of pollution nowadays. A possible use of hydrogen in this sector would almost represent a revolution or at least a great leap forward towards the imagined environmental sustainability by the founder of Unical. He said: “Very often those who in some way trace the road also trace it for others who can follow, thus becoming a point of reference”.

Unical is by its nature at the forefront with procedures suitable for workplace safety, especially considering the delicate sector it belongs to. People come first in the company, as Unical pays the utmost attention to ensuring that everyone operates in a harmonious and serene work environment. In the fundamental drive to protect the environment, Unical pays attention to waste by using recyclable packaging and obtaining a significant reduction in harmful emissions while also increasing their product quality.

The company acquired different certifications that confirms their true commitment and contribution to a better environment and society. These include the Environmental Management System Certification (UNI EN ISO 14001) in 2015 and the Occupational Health and Safety Management System Certification (UNI ISO 45001) in 2018. Furthermore, in April 2012, the organization obtained the Enterprises for Security Award, a prize organized nationally by Confindustria. Unical received recognition with a special mention by the major authorities in front of the high patronage of the President of the Republic.

Business benefit

As previously mentioned throughout the story, the key words for Unical are innovation and technology where technology showcases an ideal along with sustainability: technological progress, in fact, is felt to be what moves not only the economy but the world itself.

The prestigious position that this company has acquired over the years thanks to its intrinsically innovative nature, and the respect received from competitors and various international certification sources represent the main benefits for the business.

Social and environmental benefit

The continued research in finding methods for the use of net positive sources such as hydrogen and solar energy is the major environmental direct benefit the company produces, reducing emissions and lessening their and customers' impact on nature.

“We are not a company that only wants to produce profit. We also feel the need to produce real well-being and welfare for the environment and moreover for the people" claims the CEO. The organization raises awareness by creating new sustainable possibilities that are made available for people to choose voluntarily, slowly moving toward an always more involved conscious society. This underlines the benefit of an active, awakened society in a future where the environment will receive the consideration and respect it deserves.


Sergio Fiorani, CEO

Photo of interviewee

Business information

Unical AG S.p.A.

Unical AG S.p.A.

Piacenza/Milan/Vicenza, Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Veneto, IT
Business Website: https://www.unicalag.it
Year Founded: 1972
Number of Employees: 201 to 500

Unical AG S.p.A., since its founding in 1972 by the visionary engineer Giovanni Jahier, has been a leading company in the fields of civil and industrial heating and conditioning systems. This Italian company, now active in 4 locations across Veneto, Lombardy, and Emilia-Romagna, has always considered sustainability its central point while also honoring the long tradition of the “made in Italy” design.