We take a look at the first round of winning Italian start-ups that joined this year’s edition of our competion. The chosen projects were those with the highest potential and most innovative ideas in the Life sciences sector, all assessed by our jury of experts.

2:00 min

UniCredit Start Lab, UniCredit's business platform dedicated to innovation, now at its eighth year running, was once again an important appointment for over 50 innovative Italian start-ups, who had the opportunity to present their projects to the Sector specific Commissions of our selected jury. 


The first to express its preference was the Life Sciences Commission, which this year involved entrepreneurs and managers from some of the main Italian sector-players: Federica Alberti, Head of Corporate Affairs & Institutional Relations of Zambon, Maurizio Colombo, Vice Chairman of Sapio, Marco Ferrari, CEO of Anemocyte, Luca Foresti, CEO of Centro Medico Santagostino, Enrica Mambelli, CFO of Althea, Marco Stevanato, Deputy Chairman of Stevanato, and Giuseppe Vita, Honorary Chairman of Axel Springer.


The first prize in this category was won by PerFormS, a start-up from Modena which has developed the first alternative drug to cortisone for the long-term treatment of psoriasis, enhancing the anti-inflammatory activity of an endogenous molecule with no side effects.


"Being ranked UniCredit Start Lab's best life sciences project, confirmed the great value underlying our idea and convinced us more and more to continue the challenging road that we started a year ago, when we founded PerFormS. Thanks to the tailored mentoring opportunity offered by this program, we expect to grow and take the necessary steps to reach our objective."


The second place went to the Turin-based start-up NIB Biotech, that has developed the first rapid urine test for the screening of prostate cancer, capable of contemporary identifying the presence and aggressiveness of a possible case of cancer, helping doctors determine whether a prostate biopsy is necessary.

"A rapid test for urine analysis, reliable and easy to use, to change the standards of prostate cancer screening. This is our first objective and thanks UniCredit Start Lab's support, skills and network we aim to bring our product to international markets and become a company operating in the field of in vitro diagnostics."


The Third place went to 1000Farmacie, from Naples, that has developed a digital healthcare platform that combines the best Italian pharmacies and their warehouses, to allow users to choose from a wide range of products at the best price and receive them directly at home via a delivery service. The start-up is characterised by a zero-inventory model and by the ability to manage medical prescriptions through a last-mile delivery model.

"The access to UniCredit Start Lab will allow us to enter an international network of investors and partners. This is a unique opportunity to emerge in the complex ecosystem of start-ups and scale-ups."


Finally, a special mention to the Bologna based start-up Angiodroid, that has developed the first and only automatic CO2 injector authorised for use during peripheral angiography procedures. Automatic CO2 angiography (ACDA) is a safer, cheaper, more effective and less risky alternative than the use of contrast media containing iodine, a nephrotoxic agent.


"Angiodroid is on a scale-up path that will lead to accessing important new markets and to a structural renewal of the company in Europe. UniCredit StarLab will be a unique opportunity for the definition and implementation of our scale-up strategy, both in Europe and in other global markets."


Over the next four weeks, we will continue to tell the stories of these young Italian excellences on One UniCredit. Keep following us in the next episodes to learn about Clean Tech, Digital, Innovative Made in Italy and Impact Innovation projects.