StartHope - a weekend on the Train of Ideas

Mar 17, 2013

Last weekend I was invited to join a bunch of great people for a traveling event in Abruzzo, a region in Central Italy, named StartHope. The event is part of a startup investing program that is being setup by FIRA, the regional investment office of Abruzzo.

In brief, FIRA “branded” a train (see picture) and organized a travelling “scouting / Q&A” team to meet aspiring entrepreneurs and chat about creating new ventures. The train touched a few of the main cities in Abruzzo (Pescare, Teramo, Vasto, L’Aquila).

The Train

It was fun - not only there where great people on the train (from Mangatar’s Raffaele Gaito and Andrea Giannangelo, founder of Iubenda, to Andrea Di Camillo, angel & professional investor - but the FIRA team pulled out a magic trick and managed to fill up the train, with more than 250 people registering their interest to get onboard: many of them with ideas to propose and the sane curiosity to understand how to fund their projects. A few of those I met are actually worth a second meeting.

Way to go, FIRA, the demonstration that public-owned investment offices can organize excellent events, animate a startup community and, why not, position themselves as a reference point for aspiring startuppers.

NicoMy name's Niccolò Sanarico.

I am an Oxford MBA and an engineer with a passion for innovation and startups. I currently work with dPixel, a venture capital advisory firm based in Italy, and advise a few great startups such as Wanderio. Everything you can find here is my opinion alone. You can follow me on Twitter. Find more about me on Linkedin.

P.S.: I'm experimenting with in-browser crypto-mining as a replacement for advertising in terms of user experience, see the box below.