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(än-yĕl`lē), family of Italian industrialists.

Giovanni Agnelli, 1866–1945, served as a cavalry officer until 1892. One of the founders (1899) of Fiat (Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino), he became its head in 1901. He also established (1907) Italy's first ball-bearing plant. Under Agnelli's leadership, Fiat became one of Europe's leading manufacturers of automobiles and also produced airplanes, railroad cars and locomotives, streetcars, and tractors as well as armament for the Italian military. He supported Benito MussoliniMussolini, Benito
, 1883–1945, Italian dictator and leader of the Fascist movement. Early Career

His father, an ardent Socialist, was a blacksmith; his mother was a teacher.
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, who rewarded Agnelli with an appointment (1923) to the Italian senate. An important figure in Italy's World War II mobilization, Angelli was removed from Fiat's leadership after the war's end.

His grandson, Giovanni Agnelli, 1921–2003, known as Gianni Angelli, studied law at the Univ. of Turin and was an army officer during World War II. He was named a vice president (1953) of Fiat, managing director (1963), and chairman (1966), returning the company to family control. Also active in politics, he was appointed to the Italian senate in 1991. Under his direction, Fiat diversified into banking, insurance, energy companies, real estate, chemicals, newspaper publishing, tourism, and other industries. Although the Fiat car company was in serious financial trouble by late 20th cent., Gianni Agnelli remained committed to the family's original business, which accounted for less than a quarter of Fiat's holdings when he died.

His younger brother, Umberto Agnelli, 1934–2004, also studied law at the Univ. of Turin (grad. 1959), served (1976–79) as a senator, and was a senior Fiat executive, spending many years running the family holding companies IFI (est. 1927) and IFIL (acquired 1958). He was largely responsible for the diversification of Fiat that occurred during Gianni's chairmanship. Upon his brother's death, Umberto succeeded him as chairman, serving until his own death.

Gianni's grandson, John Philip Elkann, 1975–, was his grandfather's chosen successor. Elkann, who grew up in Britain, Brazil, and France and studied engineering in Turin, joined the Fiat board at 22 and was widely considered the heir apparent to company leadership. After the death of his grandfather and great-uncle he became vice chairman of Fiat (now Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) and of the family holding company Giovanni Agnelli e C.; he became chairman of both in 2010. In 2011 Elkann also became chairman of Exor (created by the merger of IFI and IFIL in 2009).

References in periodicals archive ?
Britain's Pearson brought an end to its near 60-year ownership of The Economist on Wednesday, agreeing to sell its 50 per cent stake in a deal that makes Italy's Agnelli family the largest shareholder in the weekly title.
JUVENTUS president Andrea Agnelli has provided a glimmer of hope for Manchester City and other clubs interested that Paul Pogba is not a certainty to remain with the Italian champions next season.
Auto Business News-December 5, 2014--Maserati achieves milestone of producing 50,000 cars at Giovanni Agnelli Plant
where he has been serving as a board member since December 1997, Elkann is also chairman of Giovanni Agnelli e C.
Raiola's comments come just days after Juventus president Andre Agnelli (http://www1.
JUVENTUS president Andrea Agnelli has criticised the decision to reject Antonio Conte's appeal against a 10-month ban from football.
Washington, August 6 ( ANI ): Robert Pattinson has been fuming that his estranged girlfriend Kristen Stewart is now staying with her producer friend Giovanni Agnelli after moving out of their LA love nest.
He has worked for the Agnelli Family's companies since 1991.
In the first few months of the year there were lower expenditures due to different reasons, but I can guarantee that we will work to fulfill the budget as planned,'' said Ferreira, who takes over as CEO from Roger Agnelli on May 22.
Sohar, April 30 (ONA) The first phase of Vale Oman's Sohar Iron Ore Pellet Plant was inaugurated today in Wilayat of Sohar under the auspices of Roger Agnelli, CEO of Vale International in the presence of Nasser bin Khamis al-Jashmi, Undersecretary of the Oil and Gas Ministry and Sheikh Ahmed bin Salim al-Wahaibi, CEO of Oman Oil Company (OOC).
A press conference was held today in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and included the participation of Roger Agnelli, Vale CEO; Onito Barbosa, Global Equity director; Vania Somavilla, Vale's Environment and Sustainability director; Wagner Pinheiro, PETROS president; Guilherme Lacerda, FUNCEF president; Eduardo Rath Finger, BNDES's Environment director.