ESTABLISHMENT OF COORPORATIONS

Regarding both Italian and European residents in Italy

Innovative start-ups are defined as corporations, under Italian law, also established in the form of a cooperative company, or a European company with the head office in Italy:

  • ​​the company's shares, or shares representing the company capital, are not listed on a regulated market or an MTF;
  • the sole or principal corporate purpose is represented by the production and marketing of innovative products or services with high technological value.
  • Establishment requirements

    Innovative start-ups must necessarily possess the following requirements:

    • the establishing members must be natural persons;
    • the company headquarters must be located in the Italian territory;
    • the company may not distribute profits for four years following the date of establishment;
    • the company should not be founded as the object of a merger, demerger, transfer of business or as a business branch;
    • the exclusive or prevalent company purpose must be represented by its production and marketing of innovative products or services with high technological value.

    Structural requirements

    • the majority of shares, or shares representing the company capital and voting rights in the ordinary shareholders' meeting must be held by natural persons, for 24 months from the moment that the company is established;
    • the company must keep its main administrative office in Italy;
    • the company must maintain, as an exclusive or predominant business purpose, the development, production and marketing of innovative products or services with high technological value;
    • the company's total annual value of production, starting from the second year, must not exceed 5 million Euro.

    Other substantive requirements

    • the company may not distribute profits for four years following the date of establishment;
    • spending on research and development incurred by the company must be greater than or equal to 20% of the total cost and value of production;
    • 1/3 of the company's workforce, in the role of employees or contractors, must be personnel who possess a Phd in research or who are in the process of gaining a PhD research degree or hold a degree, who has carried out certified research activity in credited institutions for at least three years;
    • the company must be the owner, custodian or a licensee of at least one industrial property relative to an industrial or biotechnological invention, a topography of a semiconductor product or a new plant variety directly related to the company purpose and enterprise activity.

    Publication of the deed of association

    For the deed of association, registration in a special section of the Business and Trade Registry is required.

    The attestation of possessing the required prerequisites must be carried out by means of a self-certification produced by the legal representative and filed with the office of the competent Business and Trade Registry.

    Tax benefits

    When the innovative start-up registers in the Business and Trade Registry it is exempt from the payment of stamp duty, administrative fees and annual Chamber of Commerce fees.

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