INTERNATIONAL - A strike called by a small union at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. to protest the purchase of Cristiano Ronaldo by Juventus Football Club SpA became viral news on social media last week. Only five workers showed up at the protest on Monday though.
Turnout for the strike amounted to 0.3 percent of the 1,700 workers at the first shift of the Melfi assembly plant in southern Italy, the first of a two-day protest organized by the USB union. The labor group called the strike because it found “unacceptable that, while FCA workers continue to make huge economic sacrifices, the company spends hundreds of millions of euros on the purchase of a player," the union said last week.
Spanish soccer giant Real Madrid Football Club agreed on July 10 to transfer five-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo to Juventus after the player asked to leave. Juventus, which like Fiat Chrysler is controlled by the billionaire Agnelli family, will pay Real Madrid 100 million euros ($117 million) for the move and 12 million euros in additional fees. Ronaldo, who signed a four-year contract with the club, will be presented to Juventus fans this evening in Turin.
Fiat workers in Italy have been facing temporary layoffs for several years. A plan to bring Italian car plants to full employment, originally scheduled for this year, has been delayed. Under its strategy plan announced in June, Fiat aims to convert its diesel engine production to hybrids and electric motors and to complete the shift of its Italian factories to luxury car output.