Silicon Valley is the quintessential land of the garage startup. Companies from Apple to Google started that way. The garage where William Hewlett and David Packard started HP is even a museum and a California state landmark. What these companies have in common is that, despite a humble birth, in each case the technological innovation found fertile ground to turn itself into a multi-billion company. There are many more examples, up to, for example, two year old startup YouTube, that was acquired last week by Google for $1.65 billion.
In Italy there is certainly plenty of talent, there are many research parks into which the government poured millions of Euros to fund ambitious research, and yet why isn’t the same happening there? One may argue that one component of the success of entrepreneurship and innovation in Silicon Valley has to do with a sophisticated legal and financial infrastructure that facilitates and stimulates private enterprise investment. For example, a top three ranking of the distinctive elements of this infrastructure may read as follows:
- Liquid exit;
- Mitigated risk;
- Availability of early stage funding.