The Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation is pursuing its ecosystem development strategy in order for Turin to fully express its potential as a hotbed of innovation.
The 2021-2024 Multiannual Planning Document of the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation highlights a vocation that the Foundation has been pursuing in recent years and which is now becoming a strategic priority in all respects: ecosystem development.
Under the Strategic Plan, the Foundation intends to create the conditions for Turin to fully express its potential as a hotbed of innovation.
In fact, the organisation is at the forefront of cultivating a vibrant ecosystem of innovation in the Piedmontese capital to bring together multiple complementary players, including start-ups, investors, large companies, government institutions, universities, incubators and accelerators. Guiding this effort – fuelled by a mix of patient capital, disbursement resources and multidisciplinary skills – is the desire to strengthen Turin’s strategic positioning as an international hub for innovators.
This framework includes multiple initiatives and vehicles put in place in an attempt to achieve a synthesis between a local perspective, intended to promote home-grown Turinese talents, by supporting them in their “journey from the laboratory to the market”, and a global perspective, which aims to attract excellent human capital and new business initiatives that can settle and grow within our territory.
- Today, the London Tech Week stage will host an online presentation of the Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2021 produced by Startup Genome, the leading international think tank for policy advice in the start-up sector. This year, thanks to the partnership between the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation and Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center, Turin makes its début in this publication, becoming the first and only Italian city to be reviewed in the global guide of start-up ecosystems. At its first appearance, Turin shows a marked propensity towards two sectors on the frontier of innovation – namely cities of the future and artificial intelligence – proving to be particularly attractive in terms of access to talents and the availability of experimentation infrastructure.
- On 23 September 2021, Italian Tech Week will host an early afternoon presentation by Carla Patrizia Ferrari, Chief Financial Officer of the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation, entitled “The future of venture capital”. The programme also includes an online session involving a number of protagonists of the Techstars acceleration programme: a “fireside chat” in which Martin Olczyk, Managing Director of Techstars, will interview Paolo Barbato, CEO @ Wiseair, about the cities of the future and the transformational role of the Foundation for an Italian start-up with a strong environmental vocation. In the afternoon of September 24, Francesco Profumo, Chair of the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation will also be taking part in the session entitled “Sustainable Transition in Italy and Europe”
- 27 October 2021 is the deadline set by the call to take part in the third Techstars Smart Mobility Accelerator, a European start-up acceleration programme dedicated to smart mobility, implemented as part of the partnership launched between Techstars, the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation, the CRT Foundation and the Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center. Important innovations are planned for this year, including an expansion of the spectrum of “verticals” covered by the programme, intended to focus on innovative solutions that represent the enabling infrastructure of the cities of tomorrow. All without forgetting to capitalise on the results achieved in the first two editions (23 “graduate” start-ups from 3 continents, 13 PoCs/pilots commissioned by local actors, 2 startups attracted and based in Turin, activation of a community of 150+ Mentors). The acceleration programme is therefore evolving, also changing its name to Torino Cities of the Future Techstars Accelerator. The reasoning behind this is the historically important realisation that cities are increasingly becoming a “battlefield” in which to deal with global challenges at local level, in an overall context in which urbanisation is an unstoppable phenomenon. At the same time, consideration has been given to the possibility of providing better support for the evolution of Turin as a Smart City. For the next two years, Turin will therefore be the European skills centre of the Techstars urban innovation galaxy. A transition that brings the programme even closer to the Foundation’s DNA: both because sustainability – social and environmental – becomes the cornerstone of the programme (“Sustainability across the SDG spectrum” is among the investment priorities), and because the expansion of the range of action introduced “verticals” on which the institutional action of the Foundation has been focusing for some time (including Digital Health and Cultural Heritage).
- On 12 October 2021, Turin will host the VentureUp Forum, an event promoted by AIFI – in collaboration with the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation, the CRT Foundation and Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center – which brings together the Italian community that finances innovation. This event will be an opportunity to promote the Turin Cities of the Future Techstars Accelerator programme with the involvement of people connected to it.
- Applications are open until 24 October to take part in the venture building programme Vento – Venture Originator, which will begin on 31 January 2022. 30 young people will be selected and paid for four months to create start-ups with a high development potential. Each team will be assigned a challenge by companies including Telepass, Reply and UniCredit. Their task will be to find a solution that can be transformed into a real business with great development potential. The Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation will support established start-ups by providing the most deserving teams with up to € 250,000 to contribute to the creation of prototypes/proofs of concepts, a necessary step for the development of emerging entrepreneurial projects. “The Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation is working to create the conditions for Turin to fully express its potential as a hotbed of innovation, with the ability to bring together multiple complementary actors, including start-ups, companies, institutions, universities, incubators and accelerators – said Francesco Profumo, Chair of the Foundation -. The support for Vento is consistent with this logic. Our goal is to foster an innovation ecosystem, in this case by establishing successful companies to enhance skills and attracting venture capital to support the growth of these start-ups”.