Mister Luigi Capello is really Rome Caput Startupper?

A Q&A of 29 essential questions to the leader of the Luiss Enlabs program. A big project designed to transform innovators in startuppers

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At first he was an entrepreneur, then an Angel investor, now, after one year in the Silicon Valley, in 2010, he is a creator of the incubator and accelerator most known to startuppers. He works for passion more than 12 hours per day; he does not use Twitter and sees in Rome the potential to become the main European Hub. How is Luigi Capello? The master of the house at Enlabs who, together with Luiss and WIND, today, inaugurates Luiss Enlabs, the first study program to transform the innovator and researcher into a startupper. The appointment is at Train track 24, on the first floor of the Termini Train Station. A train for the future leaves from Rome.


What is your name?

Luigi Capello 

Where were you born?

Rome on 14/7/1960

What did you study?

Economics and business at Luiss

What was your first job?

Investment holding

What did you make your first investments in?

In the field of dispensers

What do you currently do? How would you define Luiss Enlabs?

I am an entrepreneur that ‘the soul to create an integrated system for the creation and financing of startups. How could I define it? The factory of startups, which is also our pay off

How did you meet Giovanni Gazzola and why did the two of you become partners?

We met as children, and after losing touch; we met again in 2010 to start this adventure

Would you say that the idea of Enlabs stems from the crisis of 2008 (I heard you say this in an interview)?

I would say that Luiss Enlabs stems from my experience of almost 1 year in the Silicon Valley and is inspired by successful accelerator models such as ycombinator.

So, even during this moment of crisis, it is possible for such ideas to arise?

Absolutely, even Einstein said that. Crisis can be an opportunity for those who know how to see them.

What are the business lines of Luiss Enlabs?

Renting of premises, event planning and fundraising consultancy

Why have you chosen Rome?

Rome is the most important university city in Europe with approximately 300,000 students and 22 universities. It is a treasure trove of creativity that is still widely unexpressed.

How many startups have you supported?

For the time being, we have invested in 14 startups as lventure srl and as Luiss Enlabs we have seen a multitude

Which startups gave you the most satisfaction?

Numerous startups have given me satisfaction such as qurami, risparmio super, soundreef, game pix, cocontest and atooma.

Which of these would you have liked to start?

The one that I am creating, Luiss Enlabs

How many projects are chosen each year and how are the chosen (the contests)? 

12 projects each year in addition to investments in other 3 or 4 startups

How do you see the Italian innovation ecosystem?

It is in growing strong and there are very important developments

What is Rome missing in order to become like the Silicon Valley?

The ecosystem! Or rather, a connected/linked set of forces: universities, corporations, banks and investors. We want to be the first hub and among the most important in Europe

Will you ever become this?

Something could be done with some teamwork

In your opinion, what is the most creative city in terms of starup ideas?

In Italy today, certainly, Rome.

What are the three elements to create a successful startup?

Team, team and execution

Is it possible to create a startup as a second job?

Absolutely not

What potentiality of growth is there in Italy?

There is an enormous potential. Our factor is only at the beginning

This combination of Enlabs and Luiss will soon take off, what will it be?

Today, it is already a reality. We have moved into the new 2,000 square-feet premises at Termini station and we have wind as one of our sponsors. This is the first example of university, entrepreneurships and sponsors.

How many startups will you host in the new offices?

We have 120 desks available for 30-40 startups

How do you imagine Enlabs in three years?

10,000 square meters, 500 startups!!!!!

What is your passion?

Sailing, but I do not do it often

What book is on your bedside table?

The lean startup by Eric Ries.

What is your favourite song?

A beautiful day by U2.

Who do you follow on Twitter?