Innovation to promote Italy's competitiveness

Intesa Sanpaolo pepper innivation center

Intesa Sanpaolo’s innovation objectives are delivered through a dedicated company – the Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center – that explores and learns new business models and acts as a driving force for Italy’s New Economy, by adopting the principles of the circular and data-driven economies.

In terms of innovation, Italy shows a wide gap compared with other European countries and ranks at the bottom among European peers in the Assirm Innovation Index that measures a country’s ability to promote and generate innovation. The ratio of R&D investment to GDP is approximately 1.4% and venture capital investments are still low compared with other European countries (approximately US $250 million invested in the third quarter of 2019, out of US $25.8 billion at the European level). Nevertheless, innovation in Italy can still find fertile ground: the range of players in the innovation ecosystem is wide and varied. It is therefore crucial to identify opportunities to ensure the support and development of innovation, as well as policies that promote innovation in Italy.

Intesa Sanpaolo has taken up the challenge of innovation in Italy and intends to play a primary role in the development of the New Economy. This is refl ected in the Group’s leading position in the market of innovative companies:

a. The Group’s share in the startup market is around 24%, actively engaging with some 2,500 startups out of a total 10,600 (source: Min. Econ. Dev.); and

b. The Group’s market share among innovative SMEs is around 50%, with some 600 out of a total of over 1,200 (source: Min. Econ. Dev.).

Initiatives by the Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center, the company dedicated to the continuous search for innovation on behalf of clients, are concentrated in four key areas:

  1. Analysis of trends, megatrends and frontier innovation: research activities for highly innovative and complex solutions through the creation of artifi cial intelligence and neuroscience labs in partnership with top research centres;
  2. Startup development and support: evaluation and development of the growth potential of startups, development of scoring and fi nancing products for innovative companies, coaching for internationalization, networking and partnerships with the main players in the ecosystem (investors, accelerators and consultants);
  3. Open innovation: advising in the development of programmes for continuous innovation and the transformation of companies, services for matching companies and startups, and initiatives dedicated to technology scouting to support companies transitioning to the New Economy;
  4. Spreading of an innovation culture and development of innovation networks: initiatives aimed at strengthening the Group’s position as a stakeholder that promotes innovation by its customers and the matching of supply and demand, taking advantage of the Group’s widespread presence and its partnerships with players in a variety of ecosystems.
Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation