VC launches in Italy – this just doesn't happen. What is going on?

Google Italy’s country manager, Massimiliano Magrini has reportedly resigned and now plans to start a venture capital fund and a “startup incubator” (although these seem quite different). Magrini is probably in a position to financially – he started up Google in Italy in way back in 2002 after working at Altavista. And apparently he’s not doing it alone: he’s joined by 20 other players in the Italian tech scene.

He told Italian based blog “I will develop in Italy what venture capitalists are already doing in the USA. The timing and the place is right. I’m getting great feedback from the financial community. I will create a real new Silicon Valley in Milan”.

For those of you not familiar with the Italian Internet scene, this is fighting talk.

There are almost literally no VCs in Italy, and what investors there are tend to to be Angels or corporate investors only interested in e-commerce startups which hit revenues almost from the word go. Web 2.0 style startups are almost completely non-existent there. CrunchBase lists only a handful of companies, although of course that’s probably not definitive.

So for a new VC to launch in Italy is highly significant. Clearly, it really is a good time to startup.

One of the few other cheerleaders of tech startups there is Milan-based VC dpixel, headed up by serial entrepreneur Gianluca Dettori. He started the TechGarage event for the first time last year.