Alongside Boeri, which in a few years became one of the most important brands on a worldwide scale, and which now has two production plants covering a total of 15,000 square metres, there are also other companies investing in the sector.
A case in point is Nava, a company from Verderio, near Milan, which was set up in 1947 for the processing of thermoplastic materials, and which in the early 1970s also began to produce protective helmets.
Boeri had begun with leather, while Nava, 20 years later, immediately started production using polycarbonate, a relatively cheap and extremely resistant plastic material. In a few years the Nava research centre was set up, dedicated entirely to the development of new technologies for polycarbonate processing and moulding.
The first computerised systems for design and process control were introduced and, in 1975, the company decided to take part in the great adventure of motorcycle racing. The first step in this new marketing strategy was the sponsoring of a motocross team, followed by the move onto grand Prix racing. The great champions of the time, from Agostini to Ferrari and Graziano Rossi (the father of Valentino), wore Nava helmets when racing.
This was the consecration of their success and the inspiration for new research and innovation, from the construction of the first wraparound helmets, to the perfection of aeration and rapid closing systems which contributed to the spread of Italian helmets on all the European and world markets.
All pictures courtesy of Oscar by Alpinestars