Three years after an oversize corporate appetite resulted in him departing the CEO's throne at Porsche, Wendelin Wiedeking is back in the hunger business having announced a chain of pizza and pasta restaurants called Vialino. The eatery business isn't new to the former Porsche boss, nor are business interests far from the automotive sector: the former Porsche boss made his first million in real estate before he was 30, owns a restaurant now, and still owns stakes in companies that make shoes among other holdings.
Perhaps more surprisingly, Vialino is controversial before its opened its first outlet. Another Italian chain, Vapiano, is miffed at the similarity between its established name and Wiedeking's brand new one. Wiedeking's response is that his restaurants will have table service, which Vapiano lacks, and that they'll be more rustic in comparison to Vapiano's modern glass frontages. A second Italian chain, L'Osteria, said it opened its books to Wiedeking in 2011 when the exceedingly wealthy entrepreneur was considering buying in, but now that he's gone his own way L'Osteria feels that Wiedeking might just have been sniffing around for some insider context.
With no legal action planned, Vialino remains set to open its first store next month in Ludwigshafen, Germany. After that it plans to expand in Germany, then to Austria and Switzerland.