Tanzi (born 1938 in Italy) founded Parmalat in 1961 after dropping out of college. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison for fraud. Parmalat collapsed in 2003 with a 14bn euro ($20bn; £13bn) hole in its accounts in what remains Europe's biggest bankruptcy.
In December 2009 the Italian authorities announced that they had seized nineteen works of art belonging to Tanzi which had been concealed at the houses of his friends, the works of art were said to be worth more than 100 million euros and included paintings and drawings by Picasso, Monet and Van Gogh. Tanzi had denied owning any hidden works of art. Parma Prosecutor Gerardo Laguardia, said that officials had acted quickly to seize the pictures after discovering that they had been offered for sale. The authorities said that Stefano Strini , Tanzi's son-in-law was being investigated for allegedly handling the artwork.
Born: Collecchio, an outlying district of Parma, 17 November 1938.
Family: Married to Anita Chiesi; children: Francesca, 38; Stefano, 35; Laura, 30.
Education: Diploma in accountancy.
Career: Succeeded his father as manager of the family grocery business, which included seasoning ham and producing tomato purée (1960); turned to milk production and founded Parmalat (1961); floated Parmalat on the Italian stock market (1990); bought Parma football club (1991); Parmalat is declared insolvent (December, 2003).
Honours: Knight of the Order of Labour Merit of the Italian Republic (1984); honorary degree in economics, University of Parma (1992).