New business and social impact: Italian startups react to Covid

17-12-2020 | News


They are flexible and ready to react to the difficulties of the crisis, generating new solutions to face the effects of the pandemic. It's Italian startups in the era of Covid according to the picture drawn by a research by the Startup Intelligence and Digital Transformation Academy Observatories of the Politecnico di Milano.

A total of 256 realities of the Italian hi-tech startup landscape were surveyed: the 30% has changed its business model during the pandemic to respond to new market needs; 44% to create new sources of revenue; 34% to increase its legitimacy with social and environmental impact initiatives; finally the 13% of cases for pure survival. The startups' 63% has launched into initiatives such as collecting donations, launching entirely new products or services and free solutions.

Also different sectors were involved: digitization of processes for services to people, delivery, distancing systems for leisure, sanitation of environments, and other. The 34% of the companies highlighted a greater stimulus to Open Innovation, while the 22% found greater interest or started concrete collaborations with startups to overcome the emergency.

"From startups anti-pandemic solutions"

"In a context of radical and dramatic change, in which traditional companies and institutions have often appeared disoriented, the startup ecosystem has shown some ways to face the new everyday life, fielding skills, knowledge, patents, products and new solutions - he has declared Alessandra Luksch, director of the Digital Transformation Academy and Startup Intelligence Observatories of the Politecnico di Milano -. In some cases, startups have developed solutions to counter the effects of the pandemic, thinking first of the interest of the community rather than the economic return. In one out of three cases they have chosen to change their business model. Businesses must be able to grasp and exploit this great ability to react to change ».

There was no lack of difficulties for the fabric of Italian startups: again from the research of the Politecnico di Milano it emerged that the 38% had to reduce activities. But the 46% gained new customers and expanded its network, the 44% accelerated product / service development and gained market visibility. The 28% has expanded its staff to cope with the increase in activity that emerged during the emergency, or has acquired new skills. The watchword of these months has been “digital. This year the budgets for ICT have been revised: the 23% revised it up, while the 24% down. For the next year, however, a substantial holding is expected, + 0.89% with a focus on Information Security, Big Data and Analytics, eCommerce and Smart Working.

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