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Investments in Startups in Italy Were over €1 Billion in 2023, but 51% Less than in 2022

In line with Italian data, Europe also recorded a significant decline: according to data updated to September 30 by State of European Tech, startups from the Old Continent raised $45 billion in 2023 (approximately €41 billion), approximately half compared to the $85 billion of the previous year. Exits also fell, reaching a value of $9.1 billion, marking -72.8% less than last year.




The Italian innovation ecosystem continues to be lively, there is no shortage of promising projects and ideas, but this year the extraordinary economic performances of 2022, the year of records with over €2 billion of investments, have not been repeated. In 2023, the overall volume of rounds amounted to €1.13 billion i.e. 51.5% less than in the previous twelve months.

However, in light of the general decline in the collection of resources at a global level, the ecosystem in Italy is quite solid, beyond the threshold of 1 billion in annual investments.

The Italian data are in line with international evidence, heavily influenced by geopolitical instability, by the economic and financial trend characterized by both increases in interest rates and a reduction in spending with the increase in inflation. If you look at Europe, for example, the value of the European Venture Capital market decreased by 49% in the first nine months of 2023.

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All the numbers for 2023

Added to the negative sign of investments raised in 2023 (-51.5%) is the drop in the number of deals: 164 with a reduction of 18.8%. As can be seen, it is not so much the number of rounds that decreases but the amount of investments per round. While 62 million have been raised with the equity crowdfunding tool in 141 operations (Crowdinvesting Observatory data as of November 2023).

Where do you invest?

Analyzing this year’s 164 rounds in more depth, we observe that 8.5% concerned the medtech sector. Next in the ranking are loans in cleantech, biotech and technologies applied to the work/HR field (6.09%). Followed by investments in food (4.2%), in software development, editing and aerospace (3.6%).

While we find equal merit in fundraising in the mobility and cybersecurity sector (3.04%). Continuing we encounter deals in artificial intelligence, delivery and agritech (2.4%) and in ecommerce, insurtech and apps (1.8%). Deeptech and automotive close the ranking (1.2%).

Regarding round cuts, A rounds dominate (40.08%) followed by seed (16.6%), Series C funding (12.8%) and finally preseed (12%). This last data opens up new scenarios and also sometimes conflicting opinions on the harvest which is still in its infancy.

The ranking of the regions sees Lombardy in first place in terms of number of operations (39.3%), followed by Piedmont (12%), Tuscany (7.9%) and Emilia Romagna (7.3%). Campania is stable compared to last year, with five of its startups receiving investments like in Veneto (3%). Four deals instead feature startups from Trentino and Friuli (2.4%), followed by Sicily (1.8%) and Liguria (1.2%). A single operation for Umbria, Molise and Sardinia (0.6%).

Two super rounds of €100 million investments

Bending Spoons, the company that develops and markets smartphone apps, has completed the most important investment raising with two rounds of €170 million. One hundred million instead to D-Orbit, pioneer in space logistics. A good achievement also for Avantgarde bio which raised €61 million for the biotech, focusing on the development of gene therapies for hereditary retinal diseases. This is followed by the €55 million (in two rounds) of Energy Dome, focused on reducing energy consumption. And finally the €40 million of Alps Blockchain, specialized in research and development in the mining sector.

A 2023 also characterized by exits. Like that of Filo, the Roman startup specializing in IoT products, purchased by Traveler Innovations. And again Kippy, still focused on the IoT sector, to monitor the health of pets, bought by the Swiss Datamars. While Iren acquired the majority of Remat, active in the circular economy sector for €3.5 million. Finally, exit also for Baasbox, a Roman software house, incorporated by Mexemedia.

There are two startups that make purchases instead. Among the most interesting operations of 2023 we point out Glickon, active in the human resources monitoring sector thanks to artificial intelligence technologies and big data analysis, has acquired the startup Teamsight. And still noteworthy is the acquisition of Content, the Italian startup that develops AI solutions for content generation, which took over 100% of

Rounds and exits are decreasing, cleantech is growing

In line with Italian data, Europe also recorded a significant decline: according to data updated to September 30 by State of European Tech, startups from the Old Continent raised $45 billion in 2023 (approximately €41 billion), approximately half compared to the $85 billion of the previous year. Exits also fell, reaching a value of $9.1 billion, marking -72.8% less than last year: it is the worst figure since 2013 and also unicorns: in 2023 only 7 startups reached unicorn status, up from 48 last year.

There is also no shortage of positive data, such as the increase in investments in a strategic sector such as cleantech: 27% of all the capital invested by venture capital in Europe is concentrated in the search for alternative solutions to fossil fuels and in the search for technologies capable to reduce energy waste and harmful emissions. And above all, a historical fact to underline: Europe surpasses the United States in the formation of new tech startups, with an estimate of 14 thousand and 13 thousand new founders.


(Featured image by nattanan23 via Pixabay)

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First published in StartupItalia, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.

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Angelique Moss is a London-based entrepreneur, writer, and traveller. The world of business, finance, and technology, is her preferred cup of tea. She also writes about the developments and discussions on health, art, luxury and media. A top writer for several Medium publications, she has published hundreds of widely read articles on investing, stocks, global markets, cannabis, and technology for multiple platforms. She is also interested in culture, history, and social affairs.