Eni HK Lab

For startup – History

September 2021: the first Human Knowledge Lab call

The first edition of HK Lab came to an end. From 13 to 19 September, the programme of appointments at our headquarters in Villa Montecucco, Castel Gandolfo, ended with the award ceremony for the winning startups. The speeches given by the teams were streamed live.

Discover the programme of past events:

  • 13/09 - Inauguration of the event by Joule and di LVenture Group and presentation of the programme participants
  • 14/09 - Soft Skills with Tiziana Monterisi and Alessio Colombo from Rice House
  • 15/09 - Customer Discovery by LVenture Group on Training
  • 17/09 - Founders of startups tell their experiences
  • 19/09 - Final event 

July 2022: the Lab in Venice

The third edition of the Joule idea validation programme was held from 11 to 17 July, at the San Giobbe campus of Ca’ Foscari University in Venice. The teams involved studied technological and digital applications in various fields, from sustainable mobility to logistics, decarbonisation, circular economy and the fight against climate change. The participants, with an average age of 25, took part in workshops, one to one meetings and had the chance to study the fundamental aspects of business activities and  startups. From people training and management to idea validation techniques. Each team discussed its own idea with the experts in the classrooms, but the project wasn’t confined to the university premises. Discussions continued through the streets, squares and cafés of Venice, a further aggregator promoting dialogue between the stakeholders of the Joule programme.

February 2022: the Lab in Bergamo

On Sunday 27 February, the second edition of the Human Knowledge Lab programme ended in the Kilometro Rosso Innovation District in Bergamo. During the Idea Validation week, the teams stood out for their business spirit, enterprise, passion and competence.

Of the seven teams selected to participate in the residential programme in Bergamo, two in particular were selected:

  • G.E.V.I.: intelligent vertical wind generator. This team has the chance to take advantage of services in kind provided by Joule, with customised consulting on the basis of the business needs of the team, an incubation programme with the Joule partner PoliHub, and access to the KM Rosso co-working spaces for a period of 3 months following the HKLab.
  • SmartKite: Artificial Intelligence for airborne wind energy has the opportunity to take advantage of services in kind provided Joule, with customised consulting on the basis of the business needs of the team.

November 2023: Joule Discovery Lab in Novara

Eni's research centres in Novara and Bolgiano hosted the latest edition of the Joule Discovery Lab. The problem-solution fit programme took place from 13 to 17 November, a week dedicated to working on technological and innovative solutions in the fields of agritech and battery recycling.

Together with Eni's R&D experts and mentors, Gellify and Seedble coaches and facilitators. This was an opportunity for startups to develop value propositions that meet business objectives. Eni's skills and knowledge were combined with the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of the startups, resulting in a joint growth path. 


The selected startups

Here are the five startups selected to take part in the Joule Discovery Lab in Novara:

  • BEF Biosystems: an innovative biotechnology startup founded in 2016, specialising in the breeding of insects, the production of technologies for their life cycle management and the production of derivatives for animal feed.
  • Symbiagro: dedicated to the research and development of innovative biofertilisers and biostimulants capable of combining increased soil fertility with crop quality, while fully respecting the environment and the health of all living things.
  • 9-Tech: a startup exploring new solutions for recovering strategic materials from e-waste. Their most advanced researched technologies is the recycling of photovoltaic waste.
  • Tech4Lib: recovers valuable materials from spent batteries using microwave technology.
  • RarEarth: this startup has developed an innovative recycling process that can recover rare earths from motor magnets in end-of-life electric vehicles.

January 2023: Joule Discovery Lab in Castel Gandolfo

Joule Discovery Lab, the idea validation process for startups, took place from 23 to 29 January in a new version increasingly focused on the discovery of new projects and talents. The selected teams presented projects with a focus on technological and/or digital applications in the field of sustainable mobility. Seven days, in the splendid location of Villa Montecucco overlooking Lake Albano, to fine-tune one's entrepreneurial project through a validation process, to which Eni mentors and experts contributed. A unique opportunity for teams work on critical issues and be ready to face the challenges of the market.

Among the six teams selected to participate in the week of full immersion, two were awarded:

  • Flofleet: project on pipeline monitoring through airships.
  • Ummy: app that analyzes the daily sentiment of employees to offer customized solutions.