The lean journey
I am on a continuous two-way journey from Entrepreneurship to Angel Investing, currently member of Angel’s Den in London, Angel Investor of four (very cool) start-ups, advisor to awesome start-ups and mentor in Bright Sparks run by Vodafone and Oxford University Innovation, London Techstars Accelerator, Virgin Startups and TechItalia:Lab Incubator.
I started Angel Investing almost by accident, which sounds strange to say: who “accidentally” invests his own money into highly speculative ventures? Well, I did.
I was running my own startup at that time and I was tasked with exploring the world of investors because we wanted to raise funds to fuel our idea and turn it into a product. A friend introduced me to a group of Angel Investors and I got hooked.
Investing is an exciting, interesting process. Sometimes is about due diligence, sometimes is about gut’s feeling. It always is about creating a relationship with the leadership team and understanding if they really know what they are doing. Occasionally, I also have the honour to actually help and contribute to shaping the execution.
This is a wonderful feeling. And great fun!
Here’s my experience:
Techstars (2018 – Now) – Mentor
Techstars is the leading worldwide startup accelerator. I am a mentor of the London based accelerator.
Virgin Startup (2018 – Now) – Mentor
Virgin Group’s not-for-profit organisation, helping entrepreneurs in England & Scotland to start, fund and scale their business. I am a mentor in London.
Handshakr (2021 – Now) – Mentor
Compare Ethics (2019 – 2020) – Mentor
Compare Ethics empowers its ethically conscious community to find certified and verified sustainable products and services.
Oxtractor (2018 – 2019) – Mentor and Board Advisor
Oxtractor is a Software as a Service that extracts key information from user generated content by using AI and NLP to create actionable insights for businesses.
Bright Sparks (2018 – 2019) – Mentor
One of the ten mentors selected out of 120k employees worldwide to help start-ups in the #BrightSparks programme run by Vodafone and Oxford University Innovation.
3co (2018 – 2019) – Mentor
3co is the world’s simplest solution for showcasing beautiful products in augmented reality – 3D scanning robotics & augmented reality APIs for iOS & Android e-commerce apps to help businesses increase customer conversion rate and decrease likelihood of return.
SingularityNET (2017) – Investor
The world’s decentralized AI network, letting anyone create, share, and monetize AI services at scale.
TechItalia:Lab Incubator (2017 – 2020) – Mentor
London based incubator with an intensive 10-week mentor-led programme supporting Italian-speaking start-up young entrepreneurs launch their ideas off the ground, accelerate their growth, and conquer English-speaking markets. I am one of the historical mentors.
Grumgo (2017 – 2018) – Advisor for go-to market and partner strategy
Smart city travel with help of AI, travel psychology and cognitive neuroscience.
HyperSurfaces (2017) – Investor
Using Deep Learning to convert any object of any material and shape into an intelligent HyperSurface: seamlessly merging the physical and data worlds without the need for keyboards, buttons or touch screens.
Teragence (2017) – Investor
Teragence delivers insights based on hyper-granular competitive network analytics for any network operator, anywhere, any time – in real time.
Timelicious (2015 – 2016) – Co-founder, CMO, Visionary and Dreamer
I proactively participated to establishing all aspects of the business. My focus was to relentlessly orchestrate our go-to-market effort, by leading our product development, marketing communications and sales.
Timelicious featured a smart habit collector and an A.I. recommendation engine that would suggest extraordinary city experiences and places for your free time. A personal assistant but also a best friend and a very well informed local, embodied in a bigger technological frame: a smart platform that helped finding great suggestions on how to make the best use of anybody’s spare time.
Matrimoniando (2001 – 2008) – Co-founder and Business Development
Launched a wedding consultancy business from standing start – undertook business planning, product development and marketing, including social media. Married >250 couples and generated nearly €1M of revenue.