The Foro Italico in Rome is the site where the technological campus of the WeSportUp accelerator was inaugurated. The date of April 6, chosen to formalize the initiative, refers to the same day in 1896 when the modern Summer Olympics were born in Athens.
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In the areas of innovation in sport and health, Italy has a void to fill and that is why Sport e Salute SpA and Cdp Venture Capital’s Accelerator Fund are ready to revitalize increasingly more crucial. To do this, important partners have been chosen: the WeSportUp acceleration program will indeed be managed by Startupbootcamp and Wylab. The first, among other activities to its credit, has already accumulated the experience of two sportech accelerators in Australia and Qatar while, on the national level, the Ligurian incubator Wylab is one of the architects of the exit of Wyscout, a start -Italian company acquired in 2019. from Usa Hudl, an American company active in the analysis of sports performance.
The acceleration program
The call, open from today until June 30, is intended to select the 10 best innovative companies. The scouting phase will last four months and will reward companies that offer the solutions deemed the most interesting within a wide scope: innovative materials for sport and health, immersive experiences, metaverses and solutions for the organization and management of sports institutions. One eye will also be open to gaming and esports, while the other eye will be vigilant on sustainability and ESG.
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The selection day, or the day of the selection of the top ten between startups and SMEs, will open a 13-week acceleration period focused on the growth of the respective companies also with the support of some of the partner companies. The conclusion of the route will take place simultaneously with the Demo Day, the occasion in which the accelerated realities will be able to present their products and services to companies and investors of the Italian sports and wellness industry. The endowment of the program is 2.85 million euros, allocated by Cdp Venture Capital, to be allocated to the preseed and the seeding of the realities deemed worthy.
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Vito Cozzoli, President and CEO of Sport e Salute SpA, spoke about the need for Italy to be included in the ranks of those countries that are also growing thanks to innovations in the field of sport. This declaration of intent was followed by a reflection on the Foro Italico which, according to Cozzoli, should be the Silicon Valley of sport. The Managing Director and CEO of Cdp Venture Capital Enrico Resmini is ready to bet on innovative companies that can contribute to the quality leap. The continental sports market achieves a turnover of 300 billion euros per year, a sea in which new players can swim provided they know how to bring added value to the sector.
The WeSportUp accelerator program was officially born on December 3, 2020 when, globally, sportstech and wellnesstech companies raised €13 billion in funding over 36 months. Funds that have more than doubled in the last 18 months, reaching 27.5 billion euros, a sign of their growth.
Wylab management participated in the baptism of this initiative with President Vittoria Gozzi and General Manager Federico Smanio. Alongside them, Startupbootcamp with co-founder Nazareno Mengoni and Global Strategy Officer Alceo Rapagna. Among the partners: Fastweb CEO Alberto Calcagno, Telepass CEO Gabriele Benedetto, Deloitte CEO Fabio Pompei and Renault CEO Roberto Fusilli. Representing the authorities of the Capitol Monica Lucarelli, adviser for productive activities in Rome.