Italian banking executives have raised €45m ($50.9m) in a bid to launch a digital bank in a country still dealing with the coronavirus fallout.
Two Unicredit heavyweights, Roberto Nicastro and Federico Sforza, have raised the money from Generali Group, Sella Group, IFIS Group and ISA among others. The round for the project, which is reportedly called the Banca Idea Project, could be the biggest first round for an Italian FinTech.
The news comes after funding in the Italian FinTech landscape basically collapsed at the beginning of the year as it dealt with the fallout of Covid-19. The country recorded only five deals in the first three months of 2020, according to FinTech Global’s research. The drop followed from a significant decline in 2019 compared to the previous three years. Between 2016 and 2018 Italian companies raised $264.3m across 131 deals. However, the sector experienced a pullback last year when funding declined by 42.6% to $110m from the record high of $191.8 reached in 2018.