The Italian Business & Investment Initiative ® – IB&II – was established in 2011 by Fernando Napolitano, a 20 year veteran of Booz Allen Hamilton, to shine a light on the vibrant Italian economy just beneath the surface of a challenging financial climate – led by Italy’s corporations, five million Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and innovative start-ups. Italian corporations are leading in sustainability and innovation. SMEs, known for their niche specialization and the quality and reliability of their products, employ 90% of the Italian workforce and constitute the backbone of Italy’s export-led economy, contributing 80% of the country’s GDP. IB&II has fielded coherent annual programs to fulfill this mission. 

In Italy there are 5 million SMEs and innovative start-ups contributing to 80% of the country’s GDP

Under the leadership of Fernando, IB&II® has partnered with AT Kearney to scale up the three programs: BEST Scholarship, One Week Accelerator Program in New York, the yearly summit “Italy Meets the United States of America” in New York. On November 18, 2016, the Italian chapter of the summit took place in Florence, in 2017 it will be hosted in Milan in conjunction with Panorama d’Italia week.

In addition, IB&II ® is actively cooperating with all US-Italy bilateral missions: American Chamber of Commerce in Italy, American Study Center in Rome, Aspen Institute Italy and the US Italy Council. IB&II ® is particularly proud to collaborate with Bocconi University in Milan and Action Institute.  The General Consulates of Italy in San Francisco and New York have contributed in playing a strategic role.



IB&II ®  launched the summit  “Italy Meets the United States of America”  in New York on Feb 11, 2013. The objective was to facilitate a direct dialogue between Italian leadership – government, corporations, medium enterprises – and US investors and opinion makers. It was a unique opportunity to network and meet potential investors. In 2016 the Summit debut in Italy was in Florence, on October 17, in 2017 it will be hosted in Milan at the Regione Lombardia Headquarters. Furthermore, IB&II has hired a top PR Marketing firm in New York. The objective is to establish an on-going relationship for Italy with top US media to provide opinion-makers, constant information and business cases regarding Italian excellencies.

IB&II ® launched “Italy Meets the Unites States of America” summit in 2013 to enhance the dialogue between Italian leadership and US opinion leaders and investors

Based in New York, the Italian Business & Investment Initiative has a created a web of relationships with the local business community to facilitate an educated understanding of the Italian economy and the opportunities for investments. Our One Week Accelerator Program series of biannual events in New York provides the U.S. venture capital community with a platform through which some of the most exciting Italy originated start-ups are introduced.

BEST Scholarship

83 Italians involved in the BEST program and 37 high tech start-ups created in 9 years

BEST, is a unique program — a cooperation among the US Embassy in Italy, the Fulbright Commission and Invitalia —  whose objective is to create high-tech entrepreneurs in Italy. We target Italian high tech PhDs who have an innovative business idea deriving from their scientific research. Over the last 8 years, 83  Italians went through this scholarship program and 37 high tech start ups have been created in Italy.