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ZERO, the new cleantech startup accelerator, is launched

  • The new project is part of CDP's National Accelerators Network
  • Eni will be the main partner and Joule, Eni’s Business School, will host the acceleration programme
  • The opening of the call for selection for the acceleration programme that will support the development of 30 cleantech start-ups will be on 14 April

Rome, 12 April 2021 - ZERO is launched, the new cleantech startup accelerator, the result of Cassa Depositi e Prestiti's intention of building a national network of highly specialised physical accelerators, aimed at stimulating business expertise by supporting the development of the best Italian innovation talents. 

Based in Rome, Zero is the result of the cooperation with important financial and business players, including Eni as main partner - through its Joule Business School which was set up to promote sustainable and innovative entrepreneurship - and Acea, Maire Tecnimont and Microsoft as corporate partners. 
LVenture Group and Elis will be in charge of the acceleration programme and, together with CDP Venture Capital Sgr, will invest in the selected start-ups.

With an initial endowment of EUR 4.6 million, in addition to EUR 1.8 million subscribed for post-acceleration follow-on funding, the aim of the initiative in the field of the cleantech is to support the development of 30 Italian start-ups and innovative SMEs over three years as well as the growth of foreign companies wishing to develop their business by setting up an operating office in Italy. 

Based on criteria linked to growth potential and the ability to meet the technological challenges of the industry, the ZERO Accelerator will select the best innovative start-ups and SMEs which develop technological projects and solutions that minimise carbon footprint, reduce emissions, optimise the waste cycle, speed up energy transition processes and promote the circular economy.

The opening of the call for selection of the innovative start-ups and SMEs will be on 14 April 2021

Each selected start-up will participate in a five-month acceleration process, assisted by mentors, the project’s corporate partners and selected investors.

The co-working area of Joule, Eni's Business School, will house the programme, specifically in the Gasometer area of Roma Ostiense. This is an iconic place with a great industrial vocation, dating back to the beginning of the twentieth century, which Eni decided to transform into a major district of Italian innovation in Rome and which will involve public and private players with the aim of contributing to the recovery from the production crisis caused by the public health emergency. 

The ecosystem supporting innovation in Italy