The voice of British business in Italy

By Sofia Astrid Pennacchi, Secretary General of the British Chamber of Commerce for Italy (BCCI)


The BCCI is a private, non-profit making entity that works closely with the British Consulate General and UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) in Milan, and with the British Embassy in Rome.

Founded in Genoa in 1904, it is still working ever more actively to improve trade and business relationships in today's fast paced business environment. Its headquarters are now in Milan, with regional branches throughout Italy, as well as in London and Scotland.

It has 350 members, mostly Italian and British companies, but other nationalities are also represented. These include British businesses operating in Italy, Italian companies trading with the UK as well as a broad range of service providers and professional consultants.

The chamber’s mission is to assist and encourage the development of trade and investment between the UK and Italy, and to support and promote the interests of its members’ commercial activities. 


This is achieved by:

·       Assisting and facilitating bilateral trade and investment between the UK and Italy, working closely with the British Embassy, the British Consulate and UKTI

·       Supporting and promoting the interests of our members’ commercial activities, facilitating access to the local business community and organising professional networking opportunities in major Italian cities

·       Organising professional training seminars and workshops for the benefit of members by their peer experts, on relevant and topical business themes, including local and cross-border regulations and practices

·       Offering services and business advice to our members and the wider community, either directly or via our members

·       Stimulating positive cultural exchange between British, Italian and members of other nationalities through a selected range of social, cultural and sporting events


EXPO 2015

This year, with EXPO 2015 taking place in Milan, opportunities for BCCI members are enhanced thanks to the chamber’s participation in the ‘GREAT’ Weeks organised by UKTI  throughout the six-month event. The business programme consists of sector-focused business events that bring together leaders from industry, opinion formers, buyers and decision makers from across the globe. The target sectors are Food & Drink, Agri-tech, Life Sciences, Healthcare, Technology and Creative Industries.

BCCI Delegation at UK Pavilion Expo 2015

Delegation at the UK Pavilion, EXPO 2015


The partnership with UKTI is providing excellent B2B opportunities for members, as well as access to unique events and seminars developed under the Expo 2015 theme.

See Networking-Opportunities 


IBCC Speakers for UK Delegation

Speakers for the UK delegation at the UK Pavilion, EXPO 2015


Topical themes

The BCCI is also sensitive to themes that are high in the political and economic agenda; for this reason a special event ‘Women in Business’ was held in 2014 in Naples, in conjunction with UKTI, with the aim of setting a benchmark for the future. The theme was ‘Women in Business 2nd edition – Great Britain vs. Italy - Women entrepreneurship - Innovative tools and access to finance to turn your idea into a success’.

Women in Business event information


The BCCI Tax and Legal Chapter is very active, delivering events throughout the year both in Italy and also cross-border. The first tax and legal event of 2015 was a delegation visit of legal consultants to Edinburgh at the end of February.  A cross-border legal event of this nature was aimed at putting lawyers operating in different jurisdictions in touch, and follows on from BCCI’s very successful events in Leeds and London in the past years.

In 2014, the BCCI ran eight seminars in conjunction with its members, raising a great deal of interest within the legal and business environment.

More on the legal event in Scotland


As work on EXPO continues apace, Italy’s legislature continues to provide plenty of important news to keep the tax and legal chapter busy for 2015.  Most notably the Jobs Act has set out a framework for a series of significant and controversial reforms to Italy’s employment regulations.  On the Revenue side, a series of new incentives has been announced with the aim of promoting Italy as a destination for inward investment. 


The chamber’s members, that include most of the top professional firms in Italy, are at the forefront of these changes and it is the role of the Tax and Legal Chapter to channel this know-how to investors and operators.


The BCCI, being present in London, Scotland and nine of the Italian regions, offers a capillary presence in the territory that allows members to engage with market segments which might be difficult to reach and that can provide a range of insights useful for businesses. A successful event held at Firenze Savoy Hotel in April 2015, marked the reopening of the Toscana Chapter after 22 years. 


Language services are also part of the BCCI’s activities: English Language Consultancy Service (ELCS) as well as International Professional English Certificates (IPEC).


For information on the BCCI please visit our website: or write to

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