Gemar, when balloons become a work of art

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A record with a particular product, which is not immediately associated with Made in Italy, but which sees us as a leader in Europe and in the world, an example of quality, originality, imagination, creativity.

These are balloons, and Gemar from Casalvieri, in the province of Frosinone, exports them all over the world. An Italian story, which began more than 120 years ago, with Angelo Rocca, born in 1884: he emigrated to France to help his brother-in-law, a famous artisan balloon manufacturer, who sold balloons as a street vendor. When he returned to Casalvieri at the age of 18, he left the stall in the square and started his first artisanal production.

The family names are handed down, one after the other: Angelo the founder, then his son Genesio, then Angelo again and now Genesio, 47 years old. «My great-grandfather Angelo had the intuition to make the balloon an artisanal production, my grandfather Genesio had the vision of moving from craftsmanship to industry, my father Angelo focused on increasing production and technological innovation» , says Genesio, who runs the company with his parents and sister. «To the innovation, of process and product, to the continuous search for colours, models, solutions, I added the affirmation of the brand and the expansion abroad».

Gemar balloons decorate parties and events in over 50 countries on 5 continents. Production is all made in Italy, in the Casalvieri factory, where 150 people work and 6 and a half million balloons are released every day. There are sales and distribution offices in the UK and the USA. Overall turnover is 60 million. After Covid, the years 2021 and 2022 were a real boom. «2024 promises to be good, we are holding on, even if – says Genesio – we have to deal with some markets that are important to us which have closed: Ukraine, Russia, the Middle East. This geopolitical situation has weighed on our exports. But we aim to grow in other areas, starting from the Americas.”

It’s not just children’s parties: balloons are required at corporate events, weddings and any type of celebration. Personalized and with ad hoc creations. «We have our art masters, our decorators in the company», says Rocca.

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