France comes face to face with Italian tech startups

Published on Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Connecting French companies looking to invest in the Italian hi-tech market with the country's business and industrial fabric. This was the objective of the first edition of French Tech Days Italy, a two-day event organised by Business France on 15 and 16 October in Milan, at the innovation hub Le Village by Crédit Agricole. An opportunity to give French companies an understanding of the best strategies for doing business in this sector in Italy, for making the most of the opportunities that Italy offers, and for collaborating with some of Italy's leading groups.

"Open innovation driving the digital transformation of companies" was the central theme for the meetings that involved startups, managers of major companies and investors. One of the most anticipated events was the round table entitled “Open Innovation & trasformazione digitale: l’esperienza di alcuni gruppi italiani” (Open Innovation & digital transformation: the experience of some Italian groups), chaired by Layla Pavone, Advisor and Chief Innovation Marketing & Communication Officer at Digital Magics, and involving Antonio Biondi, Manager of Enel Innovation Hub Italy, Roberto Loro, CTO of Dedagroup, Alessandro Perrino, Business Innovation Senior Manager at Fastweb, Alessandro Capuzzello, Head of Governance, Innovation and Security at Mediaset and Gabriella Scapicchio, 'Mayor' of Le Village - Crédit Agricole.

“In these three years, through our global network of Innovation Hubs, we have scouted 1,500 startups, collaborated with more than 240 and scaled up projects with more than 50 of them,” explained Biondi while presenting our Open Innovation strategy. Opening up to the outside world is the central idea behind this approach, including through Enel's global network of Innovation Hubs, created to identify high potential technology start-ups and transform their ideas into business solutions. Using this model, explained Biondi, we help the start-ups to develop and implement their innovative solutions without the need to formally join or invest in the company. Enel works as an industrial partner, offering the Group's expertise through access to laboratories and facilities, a network of experts, as well as its clients and data. Enel finances the tests and co-developed projects and also makes available to the start-ups the Group’s network of contacts with key investors, accelerators, incubators and financiers from around the world. Once the test phase has been completed, the solutions and new business models are scaled up to an international level, making full use of Enel’s facilities, networks and customer base around the world.

The Milan event is part of French Tech, a French government initiative aimed at developing technological start-ups throughout the world with the involvement of investors, policy makers and community builders, who can count on a global network of over 100 French Tech Communities and 21 Innovation Hubs, including the one in Milan.

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