Letter from the Chairman

Presidente

Dear Shareholders,

2009 was a particularly challenging and complex year: traffic continued to wane in the airport channel, while the decline was less pronounced in the motorway channel thanks to the stability of light vehicle traffic. Signs of a recovery were only detected toward the end of the year.

The Group reacted with measures designed to boost efficiency, defend profitability and maximise the generation of cash. Investments were reshaped in keeping with commercial opportunities and the best possible use of resources, without compromising the capacity for growth.

In the first quarter of 2010, consumption and transport traffic made good progress on 2009, due in part to the earlier Easter season. All of our business segments are, however, showing important signs of recovery.

The integration of the retail companies acquired in 2007 and 2008 is proceeding on schedule and has produced synergies that will further improve in 2010. We are as committed as ever to further development and will seek to foster growth in a changed market environment while also continuing to build our brand portfolio through partnerships on a European or American scale.

The signs of recovery are an incentive to bolster our development projects, while still acting as prudently as we did in 2009.

Our dedicated Board of Directors and outstanding management team will continue to work with discipline and professionalism going forward. I am confident that Autogrill will soon put this difficult phase behind it and be able to take full advantage of the recovery.

 

Gilberto Benetton