Onward to New Challenges: GenoGra’s Victory at the 2022 StartCup Lombardy

Launching a startup requires time, resources, energy, and much dedication. That investment grows significantly for highly innovative startups in the deep-tech arena. Therefore, developing a strategy to achieve your goals and continually challenging yourself to validate (and perhaps adjust) your chosen direction becomes critical. For this reason, after winning the Switch2Product 2021 Innovation Challenge and completing PoliHub’s acceleration program, the GenoGra team decided to raise the bar and take on a new challenge: to participate in StartCup Lombardia 2022, the regional competition dedicated to innovative startups.

Startcup Lombardia is a competition organized by the Lombardy Region, which encourages the birth of new high-potential businesses born, hosted, or linked by collaborative relationships with Lombardy’s Universities and University Incubators. Its goal is to spread the culture of innovation within the university context, encouraging and supporting the birth and development of new entrepreneurship to promote the economic development of the Lombardy territory.

The 2022 edition of StartCup Lombardy saw the participation of numerous innovative startups from all over Lombardy, divided into four areas: ICT & Services, Industrial Technologies, Life Sciences & MedTech, and CleanTech & Energy. A diverse panel of judges evaluated the selected teams, considering two main aspects: the strength of the business idea and the ability to clearly and convincingly present their concept and market opportunities. Each startup had to prepare a business plan, evaluated in the initial stages of the competition for selecting the 20 semifinalist projects, and present a 5-minute pitch at the semifinals and final of the competition.

After passing the various stages of the competition, our team triumphed in the Life Science & MedTech category. The jury was impressed by our innovative technology, deep knowledge of the market and competitive scenario, and an agile and effective go-to-market strategy. This victory allowed us to obtain a €25k grant and the opportunity to participate in the Premio Nazionale dell’Innovazione, an even more prestigious competition for the best startups from all over Italy.

Participating in the StartCup was a conscious and essential choice for our team: we wanted to get out of the “comfort zone” of the Politecnico di Milano and challenge ourselves in a regional context, exposing GenoGra to a broader audience. The victory obtained represents a great confirmation of the validity of the business idea and the work done so far. It has been crucial in realizing our vision: making genomic analysis simple, fast, and accessible.

We want to thank the Lombardy Region and the city of Milan, which confirmed itself as the actual innovation national hub, characterized by a vibrant entrepreneurial scene and a strong drive for innovation. Indeed, the presence of major financial institutions, research centers, and prestigious universities attracts talent and capital, thus fostering the birth and development of new businesses. The opportunities offered by the Milan ecosystem, such as Switch2Product and StartCup, are tangible proof that Milan is definitely a place where innovative ideas can become reality and where to find support at all stages of their development.