Portrait of the Group
At the confluence of main shipping routes in the Mediterranean, Malta is an ideal hub for trade, industry and commerce to prosper.

Decades ago, maltese progenitors recognised the huge potential Malta’s geography offered. Many pioneered their family businesses, plenty of which have stood the test of time and are today accomplished household names. The estate of Attard & Co. Ltd. belongs to this genre of legacy: the traditional maltese family business.

Firm Attard owes its existence to its founder and visionary Edoardo Pellegrini Petit, a solicitor by profession. The firm was established in 1921, originally as an insurance agency. Yet as early as 1924, Attard company ventured into merchandising of photo products in Malta, heralding the Gevaert label, years before it came to be known as Agfa.

Photography was not the only mainstay business for Firm Attard. Earlier activities comprised artists’ materials, surveying instruments and office-related commodities, the likes of photocopiers.

Indeed, it is commonly acknowledged that Attard & Co. Ltd. (as it is today known) and its many dependants are indebted to brothers Joseph and George Pellegrini Petit, belonging to the second generation of entrepreneurs.

With the passing away of Edoardo in 1945, Joseph took on the reins of the family business at the tender age of 23. Mindful that the onus of corporate succession now lay on his shoulders, Joseph Pellegrini Petit administered the company with exuberance and gave it the impetus it needed to forge ahead.

Joined by brother George soon after the eventful merger of Agfa and Gevaert in 1964, business took to new heights as sales of leisure cameras, film, cine and magnetic tapes became more prevalent.

The agency’s acquisition of the prestigious Fiorucci marque in 1976 for fine processed meats lent credance to Attard’s innate philosophy of diversification. From the outset, Fiorucci was hailed as the Foodstuff Division’s flagship and would retain its superlative rating up to the present day.

Into the eighties, business continued to flourish for Attard & Co. and it was decided upon to entirely segregate the technical imaging lines consisting of diagnostic imaging (x-ray), graphic arts and microfilm, from photo business, in order to attribute distinct autonomy to each of the two branches.
In keeping with tradition, business affairs in 1992 began to be administered by family members of the third generation who were broken into the trade, as it were, from an early age. The company soon embarked on an expansion programme appositely called the Horizon Plan. The Plan focused on new lines several of which were not in the least related to Attard’s traditional business.

Finally operating as a limited liability company, Attard would experience growth on virtually all fronts. Extraordinarily, the Graphics Division would relish its most glorious years between 1993 and 2002 having secured a 92% share of the prepress market in imagesetting equipment. These 10 years would be etched in history as the Golden years for Attard’s Graphic Division. December 28th 2001 is a landmark date in the annals of Attard & Co. Ltd. After half a century of conducting business affairs from South Street, Valletta, the company moved seat to Canter Business Centre, Marsa. The inauguration of Attard’s new offices signalled the end of an era and start of a new epoch.

Having evolved into a group of companies, Attard & Co. Ltd. found it was necessary to organise itself in 3 independent business groups: Imaging, Industrial and Foodstuffs. With its core business thus redefined, Attard has its mind set in garnering its future ambitions.