Partner - Board Member at LVenture Group
Roberto Magnifico is a venture capitalist and angel investor based in Rome. In 2013, Roberto became a partner and board member of LVenture Group, after more than twenty-five years of work experience in investment banking, having worked with companies such as Lehman Brothers, Barclays Capital and UBS. He approached the start-up environment back in 2008, and focuses mainly on SaaS (Software as a service) startups, with further interests for what concerns the Digital Strategy, Crowdsourcing, Mergers & Acquisitions and Business Development aspects of the industry.
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Disclaimer: all content within the Startup Ecosystem Summary and Editor’s Guide sections is written by and reflects the personal perspective of the guest editor. The guest editor is not responsible for content within the Country Snapshot and Community sections, as much of this content is compiled from external sources and does not necessarily reflect the guest editor’s view.
The Italian startup ecosystem is a relatively new but thriving and fast growing one. One of Italy’s main concerns has always been finding the best way to exploit and valorize the truly infinite amount of resources and talent that is available, and the opening to the startup environment seems to be the best solution to this. Encouraging signals have been sent, and new innovative realities make their way into the ecosystem every year, with numbers showing an exponential growth. Around 80% of Italian-based startups that receive funding spend most of the money in R&D, which testifies to the desire to innovate. The Italian startup ecosystem is surely still at an embryonic stage, but that can only be interpreted as a huge opportunity, especially if combined with the aforementioned resources and talent available. Therefore, the growth opportunities do not only regard startups that might enter the Italian market, but the ecosystem itself, making it attractive for corporates and various agents of the Venture Capital industry as well. In addition, there are amazing arbitrage opportunities for international VC investors.
There is a huge growth opportunity for the Italian startup ecosystem, an opportunity which is driven by a number of factors. Mainly, these factors are: a) access to technology; b) access to talent; c) growing access to capital; d) low cost of production factors.
The main challenges that the Italian startup ecosystem faces are: a) the institution of a more favorable regulatory environment to stimulate the birth of start-ups; b) more favorable tax policies; c) greater involvement of the private sector, SMEs in particular; d) a stronger global outlook and appeal, e) a slimmer bureaucratic process which is currently amongst the heaviest burdens that start-ups have to face.
Last but not least, there are numerous opportunities that will be fostered in the current landscape: a) The National Innovation Fund planning to deploy considerable sums of capital into the Venture Capital industry; b) the possibility of leveraging key technological sectors of the manufacturing economy; c) making use of the strong R&D university centers; d) once again, access to the incredible talent pool available in our country.
Editor’s choice of the country’s top 10 emerging tech startups.
Editor’s pick of which ‘Featured Startup’ is especially worth following and why.
Editor’s choice of the industries with the most potential for technology disruption and growth.
Editor’s perspective of the maturity level of talent in the ecosystem.
Editor’s commentary on how the country’s culture and history have impacted the ecosystem.
Like most European cultures, Italy has been influenced by state intervention policies which may have hindered entrepreneurial risk-taking measures. This has changed over the past 5 years, as competitive pressures and productivity issues have stimulated policy changes in favor of VC and new entrepreneurial endeavors.
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Impact Hub Italy (Country-wide): Locations in Bari, Florence, Milan, Reggio Emilia, Rome, Syracuse, Turin and Trento.
Smart & Start Italia: Smart & Start Italia is the incentive that supports the birth and growth of innovative startups. It finances projects ranging between € 100,000 and € 1.5 million. The application is presented only online on the Invitalia platform.
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