News & Events

CRIF invests in 5 innovative start-ups in the Fintech, Insurtech, and Agritech sectors selected as part of the I-Tech Innovation 2021 acceleration program

Today sees the announcement of the start-ups selected for the first edition of “I-Tech Innovation 2021”, the call launched by CRIF and the Golinelli Foundation for innovative start-ups in three strategic sectors. A total of €1 million will be invested in the 8 projects that were chosen in the final selection process out of more than 200 applications received from Italy and abroad: 3 projects in Fintech/Insurtech, 2 in FoodTech/Agritech, and 3 in Life Sciences/Digital Health.

Created from the synergy between two seemingly different organizations, but complementary in terms of expertise and strategic vision, the aim of I-Tech Innovation 2021 - initially promoted also with the support of Digital Magics - is, in the short term, to encourage the creation of a new kind of entrepreneurship with highly innovative and technological content, investing in Italy’s areas of excellence, and in the long term to help bridge the gap in Italy’s technological development.

The chosen start-ups will now be involved in G-Force, the acceleration program of G-Factor, the incubator-accelerator of the Golinelli Foundation aimed at emerging entrepreneurial businesses.

The teams will have the chance to embark on a 7-month program, from April 12 to the end of November, to support the development of their business models, with an initial intensive phase through July, and a second follow-up phase carried out remotely.

The G-Force acceleration program is one of a kind: it is not purely academic but rather a type of venture building process, working alongside the start-up, and it is designed and built around the specific characteristics and practical development needs of every single project and team. The training content and mentoring will be provided by industry entrepreneurs, international managers, trainers, and by G-Factor staff, also made up of entrepreneurs, managers, and technical-scientific and financial advisors.

Several areas will be addressed: market definition and analysis, technical-scientific validation of products-services, design of business models and development plans, determination of the correct value proposition for future investors, understanding regulatory aspects at a national and international level, protection of the brand and intellectual property, and learning techniques to better present the idea and approach investors, industrial or scientific partners, customers, suppliers, and future staff in the right way and at the right time. During the program, start-ups will be introduced to important industrial partners in a national context and to a group of investors comprising investment funds, venture capital funds, business angels, and family offices, chosen ad hoc for each start-up.

“Financial institutions, as well as insurance companies, utilities, and large corporations, increasingly want to expand their offering of innovative products and services and are therefore extremely interested in the opportunities offered by new ecosystems that rely on collaboration with third parties to create value for the end customer. New technologies play a key role in this area, enabling further acceleration in the development of digital solutions. CRIF’s involvement in the I-Tech Innovation project stems from the desire to offer the selected start-ups access to its clear strategic vision, advanced skills, and more than 30 years’ experience gained in the most competitive markets at a global level,” commented Carlo Gherardi, CEO of CRIF. “Our ambition is to become a point of reference for young companies in the Fintech, Insurtech, and Agritech sectors that want to embark on a structured growth path. We gathered a huge number of brilliant ideas during the selection process, and it was very difficult to identify the innovation projects with the greatest potential to be really successful. Our role will be to help the selected start-ups express their full potential so they can find a place in the market. We are also thinking of starting a community program with ad-hoc initiatives extended to all the start-ups that took part in the call and are interested in undertaking a program with CRIF.”