First U.S.-bound Ferrari 458 Italia auctioned to help Haiti victims

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 29, 2010

Ferrari will donate proceeds from the auction of its first North American-bound 458 Italia to Haitian earthquake victims. There are about 500 potential bidders who will be participating in the auction that's set to be held at a private residence in L.A. It can still be recalled how Ferrari auctioned off its last 2009 F430 to benefit earthquake victims in L'Auila, Italy.

Representing the supercar maker at the auction are Deputy Chairman Piero Ferrari (son of founder Enzo Ferrari) and North American CEO Marco Mattiacci.

It has become a trend now for automakers to donate vehicles or auction proceeds to the cause. Last month, Lotus worked with Supermodel Naomi Campbell to auction eight special edition Evoras to benefit Haiti as well. The Ferrari auction will give the proceeds to the Catholic Medical Mission Board and Clinton Foundation.

The CMMB has long been doing charity work in Haiti since 1912 while the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund was formed after the earthquake.

Ferrari revealed that it had raised the amount of $601,000 to help the Catholic Medical Mission Board and William J. Clinton Foundation in their relief efforts for Haiti. This was achieved during the gala event where the brand auctioned off the first ever Ferrari 458 Italia to enter the U.S.

At that time, it sold for $530,000. Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa, Deputy Chairman Piero Ferrari, and North America CEO Marco Mattiacci hosted the gala. The party had more than 500 guests that included celebrities and Ferrari aficionados. Guests include Mollie Simms, Katie Cassidy, Malin Ackerman, Joel McHale, Patrick Dempsey, Jeremy Renner, Aaron Eckhart, and John Mayer.

In addition to the Ferrari 458, everyone also had the chance to bid on the original racing suit worn by Formula One driver Fernando Alonso, which went for $31,000. Other items in the auction included two opportunities to be part of Scuderia’s Ferrari team when they participate during the Canadian Gran Prix in Montreal to be held next June.

These two items went for $20,000 and $21,000. In determining who would be the beneficiaries, the company wanted organizations that would be able to provide the highest level of aid to the country of Haiti both immediately and in the long-term. Ferrari knew that its social responsibility was to commit to an advocacy that was close to everyone’s heart but clearly needed support.

The company chose William J. Clinton Foundation and Catholic Medical Mission Board due to their strong ties to the country. The Catholic Medical Mission Board for instance has had a presence in Haiti as far back as 1912.

The Foundation meanwhile, was established by Bill Clinton, who himself had been personally asked by President Obama to head the U.S. efforts to Haiti through the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund. During the gala event, it was also revealed that the University of Modena’s Department of Orthopedics and Hand Surgery will be sharing both its knowledge and resources to aid CMMB.

This Department already has a long relationship with the company with the studies of its specialists mainly financed by Ferrari. Dr. Landi will head the team, and they will train and conduct capacity building to the medical community in Haiti. All the work will be done in partnership with CMMB as the organization has a rather extensive healthcare network.

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