Tod’s chief Diego Della Valle is never one to mince words, and this weekend, he took Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane SpA chief executive officer Mauro Moretti to task.

After Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said that new tax deductions for citizens earning under 25,000 euros a year, or about $34,468 at current exchange, would be made possible in part by cutting the salaries of top public executives, Moretti, whose salary in 2012 was reported to be over 850,000 euros [about $1,171,945], said that he and other managers were likely to resign if faced with pay-cuts.


Della Valle wasted no time in responding. “If Moretti had the courage and the dignity to leave, he would find millions of Italians ready to show him the door: they’re the travelers forced to travel with so many inconveniences on the Italian rail system, forced to put up with unjustified delays, to travel on old trains, to use decrepit and rather unsafe train stations, with no respect for their dignity,” he said. “Indeed, it’s up to [Italians] to judge how the national railways are managed. It’s time to raise the curtain on the national railway and on Moretti, to understand why politicians are dominated by this man. We need to clarify all the relationships that run between the railways, Moretti and the politicians who, with a few rare exceptions, fall in line completely with him, allowing him to do whatever he wants.”

Della Valle is known as a major investor in the Italian business world, and has also been financing restorations of the Roman Colosseum. In 2012, he developed high-speed train service Italo — the first major Ferrovie dello Stato railway competitor — with Ferrari president Luca Cordero di Montezemolo.

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