Innovative startups and SMEs, one in five is based in Milan, with a turnover of over 2.8 billion

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Milano confirms itself as a privileged ecosystem for the birth and development of innovative startups and SMEs, two realities that represent, today, the largest and most widespread vehicle for technology transfer in Italy.

In fact, the metropolitan city hosts 3,301 businesses of this type, equal to 20% of the Italian total, according to the most recent data available (September 2023). The weight of Milan is even more significant considering the turnover: it is 2.8 billion euros in turnover in the 2022 financial year; more than a quarter (27.4%) of the national total.

These are some of the trends that emerge from the eighth edition of the Open Innovation and Corporate Venture Capital Observatory promoted by Assolombarda and InnovUp in collaboration with InfoCamere and Politecnico di Milano. The survey, presented today at Deloitte’s Green House in Milan, aims to map and study the Italian scenario, with a particular focus on Lombardy and the Milan area.

«Innovative startups and SMEs are a precious asset for the Italian economy, as they have, by their nature, a strong innovative capacity and a marked propensity for the use of technology – declared the president of the Young Entrepreneurs Group of Assolombarda, Federico Chiarini -. Yet, in Italy, in the current year there has been a contraction in the number of companies of this type: a phenomenon less perceived in Lombardy and in the metropolitan city of Milan which must, however, turn the spotlight on the need to support ideas, business and projects”.

According to data from the Observatory, in 2023 the number of innovative startups and SMEs recorded a decrease of -1.4% in the metropolitan city of Milan compared to 2022; a more contained contraction in reference to the Italian -3.5%. But, if on the one hand the number of innovative startups and SMEs owned solely by individuals or individual companies have decreased, on the other, those with at least one specialized financial or corporate investor (CVC) have increased. A circumstance that testifies to the city’s ability to attract qualified and structured investors capable of supporting the development of the most promising and innovative entrepreneurial realities.

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