Telecom Italia: Working Capital 2013 now underway, supporting start-ups and leading-edge talent

04/19/2013 - 02:00 PM

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Three “accelerators” opening in Rome, Milan and Catania, to act as incubators and centres for mentoring and coaching new internet business projects 
This year’s Working Capital programme will award the best ideas enterprise grants worth €25,000 each

The 2013 programme of Working Capital, a Telecom Italia initiative that has been boosting Italy’s digital business ecosystem since 2009 by offering direct support to the most promising talents and fostering the birth and development of new businesses in Italy, is now underway. Start-uppers are also being put in touch with domestic and international investors who are looking for cutting-edge business ideas.

This year Telecom Italia is unveiling an exciting new development: three new accelerators at Italy’s key digital nerve centres in Rome, Milan and Catania. These venues are places for startuppers to work, share experiences and grow their business idea with the help of a team of venture capitalists, businessmen and innovators who will follow them along a three-month acceleration pathway. The end-goal is to convert new ideas into business projects.

For 2013, Telecom Italia Working Capital will provide 30 business grants worth €25,000 for digital and green category projects. Applications must be submitted online to the www.workingcapital.telecomitalia.it website by 30 September 2013. Note that contestants who wish to take part in the acceleration programme selection process must also send in their project by the end of May, stating whether they’d like to attend the acceleration pathway in Rome, Milan and Catania.

After last year receiving more than 4000 projects from a community of 15,000 aspiring young entrepreneurs, funded 19 start-ups, made 79 business grants and incubated 36 projects, in partnership with the Kauffman Society Telecom Italia has implemented a crowdfunding platform for all projects received so far to enable domestic and international investors to select the most interesting ideas for funding.

Marco Patuano, Telecom Italia COO, says: “A company like ours, which works in communication between people, ideas and businesses, needs to innovate and renew itself every day. For Telecom Italia, seeking out talented young people and ideas to foster and follow along their path to growth is both an investment and at the same time a mission to contribute to Italy’s economic recovery. With these three acceleration venues, Working Capital 2013 has set itself the task of covering the nation as it cultivates talent and fast-tracks ideas into business projects.”

Rome, 19 April 2013