By Mark Ambrogi
For Claudio Bertolini, it was time for a career change.
The Italy native, who always wanted to own his own business, spent 31 years with Esaote North America (formerly known in the U.S. as Biosound and later Roche Diagnostic), distributing medical equipment.
When the Carmel resident learned about Arcadia Adjusted Louvered roofs from a former colleague who running distribution in the Southeast, he was sold on the concept.
Bertolini, 57, and his wife Anna became co-owners of Arcadia Midwest last fall. The roofs are powered coated, extruded aluminum with stainless steel components and can be operated by a remote control.
“You have shelter when there is rain and you have shade when there is too much sun,” Bertolini said.
Bertolini said he learned Arcadia was seeking to establish distribution in the midwest.
“I had experience in establishing distribution, in a different market with medical equipment,” Bertolini said.
Bertolini moved from Italy to Indianapolis in 1998 for two years. They came back to Indianapolis for one year in 2001 before returning to Italy They returned in 2006 and lived in Fishers for a year and when they decided to stay in the U.S., they settled in Carmel.
The couple has sons, Chris and Alex, and daughter Thea, a Towne Meadow Elementary School fifth-grader.
Chris played tennis at Depauw University and is graduating this spring. Chris captured the state doubles title with Patrick O’Neill as a Carmel High School senior. Alex, who will graduate from North Central High School this spring, will play tennis for Depauw in 2015-16. He played on two state championship tennis teams at North Central.
Anna, from Great Britain, moved to Italy when she was 20 and met her future husband.
They are enjoying working together in the business. The installation of the roofs is mostly seasonal from March to November.
“We are very busy now,” Bertolini said. “We are happy with the feedback we are getting.”
The item is more expensive than a pergola, Bertolini said.
“But it’s way less expensive than building a sun room,” he said.
Bertolini said the roof’s cost is about $60 per square foot.
“The average for the ones we are selling is between $14,000 and $19,000 for the average residential size,” Bertolini said.
Anna said some customers choose to cover half of a patio to save cost.
“We can always add another half later, it’s almost like Lego (pieces),” Anna said. “We try to work with people’s budgets.”
The product is attractive for restaurants with outdoor seating.
“It’s almost like a no-brainer (for restaurants),” Anna said.
Betrolini has installed the Arcadia roof at Rick’s Cafe Boatyard in Indianapolis. Peace Water Winery, 37 Main St. in Carmel, has plans to have the roof installed in an outdoor area in May.
“On half they are going to use a regular pergola and half they are going to use our system,” Bertolini said.
Bertolini is currently selling in Indiana and Louisville area, but might eventually expand sales into Illinois and Ohio.
“I’m a great believer in step by step,” Bertolini said. “We want to establish ourselves here for commercial and residential. You can destroy a business if you are thinking too big.”
Anna said the product can sell itself but the challenge is getting people to learn about it.