Top 20 Businesses to Setup in Italy for Successful Ventures


Updated on:

20 businesses to setup in  Italy

Italy is a land of opportunity for entrepreneurs looking to establish successful ventures. From its rich cultural heritage to its vibrant lifestyle, Italy offers a diverse range of business prospects for those looking to invest in the country. In this section, we will explore the top 20 businesses to set up in Italy for successful ventures.

Whether you’re looking to start a business in the thriving tourism and hospitality industry or tap into Italy’s culinary delights with a business in the food and beverage sector, there are numerous avenues to explore. Apart from small business in Italy, Fashion and design, renewable energy, and e-commerce are also some of the lucrative sectors that offer great potential for investment in Italy.

By carefully assessing the market demands and trends, entrepreneurs can identify business opportunities that can cater to the unique Italian lifestyle and capture the spirit of this beautiful country.

Diving into the Italian Startup Ecosystem: Business Opportunities and Support

​Italy may be renowned for its delicious cuisine, rich history, and stunning landscapes, but it is also quickly becoming a hotspot for startups and entrepreneurs. The Italian startup ecosystem is thriving, offering a plethora of business opportunities and support for those willing to take the plunge. From Milan to Rome, Turin to Bologna, the country is buzzing with innovative ideas and creative minds, making it an attractive destination for those looking to establish their own ventures.

One of the key factors contributing to Italy’s rise as a startup hub is the government’s commitment to fostering entrepreneurship. Initiatives such as StartupItalia! and Italia Startup Visa have made it easier for foreign entrepreneurs to launch their businesses in the country, offering support and incentives for innovation. This, coupled with a growing network of incubators, accelerators, and co-working spaces, has created a fertile ground for business ideas to flourish.

Moreover, Italy’s diverse economy presents countless opportunities in various sectors. From tech and e-commerce to fashion and design, the country offers a vast market for startups to tap into. With its strong manufacturing industry and globally recognized brands, Italy provides a unique blend of tradition and innovation that can give businesses a competitive edge. Whether it’s developing cutting-edge technology, creating sustainable fashion brands, or revolutionizing traditional industries, the possibilities for business ideas in Italy are endless.

Furthermore, the Italian startup ecosystem benefits from a strong community spirit and a supportive network. Startup events, conferences, and meetups are held regularly, providing entrepreneurs with opportunities to connect, learn, and collaborate. These events not only offer valuable networking opportunities but also enable startups to gain exposure, attract investors, and access resources. The sense of camaraderie and shared passion among the startup community in Italy is truly inspiring.

In conclusion, diving into the Italian startup ecosystem offers entrepreneurs a world of business opportunities and support. With a favorable government outlook, a diverse economy, and a vibrant community, Italy has established itself as an attractive destination for startups. Whether you have a groundbreaking tech idea or a unique approach to a traditional industry, the Italian startup ecosystem is ready to embrace and nurture your business ideas. So, take the plunge and explore the realm of entrepreneurship in Italy – the possibilities are endless!

Key Takeaways

  • Italy offers promising opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to expand their business abroad.
  • The top 20 businesses to set up in Italy for successful ventures include tourism and hospitality, food and beverage, fashion and design, renewable energy, and e-commerce.
  • By carefully considering the market demands and trends, entrepreneurs can set up businesses that cater to the unique Italian lifestyle.
  • Investing in Italy can be highly rewarding for those with a passion for the country’s culture, cuisine, and art.
  • If you’re considering expanding your business abroad, Italy should be at the top of your list.

Tourism and Hospitality Industry

The tourism and hospitality industry in Italy is a significant contributor to the country’s economy, generating billions of euros annually. According to the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), the number of tourist arrivals in Italy in 2019 exceeded 94 million, with the highest numbers of visitors coming from Germany, the United States, and France.

Italy’s rich cultural heritage and stunning landscapes attract millions of visitors every year, making it an ideal location to establish a business in the tourism and hospitality industry. From boutique hotels and bed and breakfasts to tour operators and travel agencies, there are numerous opportunities available to cater to the needs of tourists.

Type of Business Location Investment Required
Boutique Hotel Rome, Florence, Venice €500,000 – €2 million
Tour Operator Any Major City €100,000 – €500,000
Bed and Breakfast Tuscany, Umbria, Sicily €50,000 – €100,000

As shown in the table above, the investment required for starting a business in the tourism and hospitality industry can range from tens of thousands to millions of euros. However, with the right location, marketing strategy, and customer service, a business in this industry can be highly profitable.

Moreover, with the growing trend of sustainable tourism, businesses that promote environmental awareness and offer eco-friendly solutions are in high demand. Companies that offer “green” services such as electric car rentals and bicycle tours are becoming increasingly popular among tourists who are conscious of their carbon footprint.

In conclusion, the tourism and hospitality industry in Italy provides a wealth of opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to enter a thriving market. With a solid business plan and a commitment to delivering exceptional customer service, a business in this industry can be both financially rewarding and fulfilling.

Food and Beverage Industry

Italy is renowned for its gastronomy, so it comes as no surprise that the food and beverage industry is one of the most thriving sectors in the country. Whether you are a restaurateur, a winemaker, or a gelato artisan, there are countless opportunities to create successful businesses in the culinary field.

One popular option is to open a traditional trattoria, serving regional dishes made from fresh, seasonal ingredients. Italians are passionate about their cuisine and take pride in locally sourced produce, so offering an authentic dining experience can be highly rewarding. Alternatively, you could specialize in a particular food niche, such as pizza, pasta, or seafood, and attract a loyal customer base.

food and beverage industry

For those with a passion for wine, Italy offers a vast selection of grape varieties and wine-making techniques. Setting up a boutique winery can be a lucrative business, especially if you focus on producing organic or biodynamic wines. Alternatively, you could establish a wine shop, offering a curated selection of Italian wines along with tastings and educational events.

If you have a sweet tooth, opening a gelateria could be the perfect business venture. Italy is famous for its artisanal gelato, made from natural ingredients and with a wide variety of flavors. Creating your recipes and experimenting with new flavors can be an exciting and rewarding experience that will attract locals and tourists alike.

Italian Food and Beverage Exports

It’s worth noting that the Italian food and beverage industry is not only successful domestically but also offers excellent export opportunities. According to the Italian Trade Agency, the food and beverage sector represents over 30% of Italy’s total exports.

Top Italian Food and Beverage Exports Export Value (€ millions)
Pasta 2,366.1
Wine 6,026.3
Cheese 2,751.6
Olive oil 2,429.8

“The high quality and authenticity of Italian food and beverages are highly appreciated abroad, making them an excellent export opportunity for Italian businesses.” – Italian Trade Agency

Whether you choose to focus on the domestic market or explore export opportunities, the food and beverage industry in Italy is sure to provide rewarding and exciting business opportunities. With a passion for creativity, quality, and innovation, entrepreneurs can tap into Italy’s rich culinary heritage and create successful ventures that attract customers from near and far.

Fashion and Design

Italy is renowned for its rich artistic heritage, and nowhere is this more evident than in the fashion and design industry. From high-end luxury brands to independent artisans, Italy boasts a diverse and thriving fashion scene that presents unique business opportunities for entrepreneurs.

Whether you’re interested in launching your own fashion label or setting up a design studio, there are several key factors to consider when starting a business in this field. One of the most important is choosing the right location, as the city you choose to establish your business in will have a significant impact on your success.

Some of the most popular cities for fashion and design in Italy include Milan, Florence, and Rome. Milan, in particular, is known as the fashion capital of Italy, and is home to many of the country’s top fashion houses and luxury brands.

In addition to choosing the right location, entrepreneurs in the fashion and design industry will also need to focus on creating a strong brand identity, developing a unique design aesthetic, and building relationships with suppliers and manufacturers.

One of the key advantages of starting a business in the fashion and design industry in Italy is the country’s robust supply chain, which includes everything from skilled artisans and fabric suppliers to manufacturers and logistics providers. This makes it easier for entrepreneurs to source the materials and resources they need to create high-quality products and bring their designs to life.

Fashion and Design

“Italy is the center of creativity and art, especially in the fashion industry. The country’s rich history and culture inspire new trends and ideas every day, making it the perfect location for fashion entrepreneurs to establish their business and tap into the country’s creative energy.”

Key Takeaways

  • Italy is a prime location for entrepreneurs looking to start a business in the fashion and design industry.
  • Location is an important factor to consider when starting a business in this field, with Milan, Florence, and Rome being popular choices.
  • Developing a strong brand identity and unique design aesthetic is crucial for success in the fashion industry.
  • Italy’s robust supply chain makes it easier for entrepreneurs to source the materials and resources they need to create high-quality products.

Renewable Energy: A Sustainable Business Opportunity in Italy

If you’re an entrepreneur with an interest in sustainable solutions, then the renewable energy sector in Italy is a promising area to invest. The country has set ambitious targets for renewable energy, aiming to generate 30% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. With such a strong focus on sustainability, there are multiple opportunities for businesses to operate in this sector.

Renewable Energy Image

The Italian Market for Renewable Energy

The renewable energy market in Italy is vast, with multiple sectors experiencing significant growth. Solar energy is the most prevalent source, accounting for over 60% of the installed capacity of renewables in Italy. Other forms of renewable energy, such as wind and hydroelectric power, are also rising in popularity.

Type of Renewable Energy Installed Capacity (MW)
Solar Photovoltaic 20,763
Wind Power 10,888
Hydroelectric Power 8,464

The above table highlights the installed capacity of the major renewable energy sources in Italy. As you can see, solar photovoltaic energy leads the way, with a capacity of over 20,000 MW. Wind power and hydroelectric power follow closely behind, with approximately 10,000 MW and 8,000 MW of installed capacity, respectively.

The Future of Renewable Energy in Italy

The Italian government has committed to increasing the country’s renewable energy capacity, providing a stable and sustainable environment for businesses investing in this sector. The National Integrated Plan for Climate and Energy 2030 outlines the Italian government’s targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency, highlighting the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and transitioning to a low-carbon economy.

“The development of a sustainable energy system is a key element for Italy’s economic growth.”

Investing in renewable energy not only benefits the environment but also presents a profitable opportunity for businesses. The Italian market for renewable energy is expected to grow significantly in the coming years, offering entrepreneurs a chance to establish successful ventures and contribute to Italy’s sustainable development.

Business Opportunities in Renewable Energy

There are various business opportunities in the renewable energy sector. In addition to energy production, consulting services, and green technology startups, businesses can also specialize in energy efficiency and energy storage solutions.

  • Installation of solar panels and wind turbines
  • Development of green technologies
  • Consulting on sustainable energy solutions
  • Energy storage solutions

By focusing on these areas, businesses can cater to the growing demand for renewable energy solutions in Italy and establish a foothold in this promising sector.

E-commerce and Online Services

The world of business has transformed in recent years, and E-commerce has become an essential element in developing an online presence. Online services ubiquitously shape the way we conduct business and has irreversible potential in the future. Therefore, it is crucial to identify different kinds of E-commerce businesses that entrepreneurs can enter in the Italian landscape.

  • Online Marketplaces- With the rise of online shopping in Italy, opening an online marketplace can be highly profitable. Italian online platforms such as eBay Italy, Amazon Italy, and have consistent traffic and can be an effective way to sell products to a vast Italian customer base. Amazon Italy is the largest online marketplace in Italy, with around 4 million active customer accounts. So, investing time and effort in an online marketplace can be a sure-shot way to grow your business.
  • Digital Marketing Services- With the increasing trend of digital marketing in Italy, businesses need experts to help them execute their online marketing campaigns. Offering digital marketing services such as SEO, SEM, PPC, or social media management can be an excellent investment for entrepreneurs looking to establish a digital marketing business in Italy.
  • Specialized Online Consulting- Offering consulting services that cater to specific niches such as legal, financial, or marketing is an effective way to provide an additional stream of income. Additionally, specialized consulting services that cater to the unique Italian lifestyle can be particularly profitable. For example, Italy is known for its strong coffee culture, hence offering consulting services for setting up a successful cafe or roasting business can be lucrative.

E-Commerce and Online Services

“E-commerce in Italy is expected to grow by 10.2% in 2021, with a market volume of US$30,373m.” – Statista

With the consistent growth in e-commerce in Italy, setting up a business in the e-commerce and online services industry can be highly profitable. However, it is essential to conduct thorough market research and identify a niche that aligns with your business goals and has the potential to generate substantial revenue.

Wellness and Health: Trends in Italy’s Health Industry

​When it comes to wellness and health, Italy has always been at the forefront. The country is known for its Mediterranean diet, famous for its health benefits, and its abundance of fresh, local produce. But in recent years, Italy has seen a surge in wellness trends that go beyond just food. From fitness innovations to holistic healing practices, the health industry in Italy is booming, offering a plethora of business ideas.

One trend that has gained significant popularity in Italy is mind-body fitness. Yoga and Pilates studios are popping up all over the country, catering to a growing demand for mindful movement and stress relief. As Italians become more conscious of the importance of mental and emotional well-being, businesses offering meditation classes, sound healing, and breathwork workshops have also become commonplace.

Another key trend in Italy’s health industry is the rise of organic and sustainable products. Italians are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of their choices and are seeking out natural, eco-friendly alternatives. This has led to the proliferation of organic grocery stores, vegan and vegetarian restaurants, and eco-friendly beauty and skincare brands. Businesses that offer organic farming, sustainable packaging, and eco-tourism experiences are also gaining traction.

Wellness tourism is yet another sector of the health industry that is thriving in Italy. With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and indulgent spa traditions, the country has become a hub for wellness retreats and spa vacations. People flock to Italy to experience the healing properties of thermal baths, enjoy rejuvenating massages, and immerse themselves in the serenity of nature. This has paved the way for new business opportunities in the form of wellness resorts, wellness retreat organizers, and holistic travel agencies.

Italy’s health industry is undergoing a transformation, with a focus on holistic well-being and sustainable practices. As Italians prioritize their wellness more than ever before, businesses offering mind-body fitness, organic and sustainable products, and wellness tourism experiences are thriving. Entrepreneurs looking for business ideas in Italy can tap into this growing market by offering services and products that cater to the country’s wellness-conscious population.

Artisanal Crafts: Tapping into Italy’s Craftsmanship Tradition

​Italy has long been known for its rich tradition of craftsmanship, and artisanal crafts continue to thrive in this beautiful country. From hand-crafted leather goods to intricate ceramics, Italy offers a wide variety of unique and high-quality products that are in high demand around the world. These artisanal crafts not only showcase the skills and creativity of Italian artisans, but they also provide a lucrative business opportunity for those looking to tap into Italy’s craftsmanship tradition.

One of the key factors that make artisanal crafts from Italy so sought after is the attention to detail and the use of traditional techniques that have been passed down through generations. Each piece is lovingly created by skilled artisans who take pride in their work, ensuring that every product is of the highest quality. This dedication to craftsmanship sets Italian artisanal crafts apart from mass-produced items and creates a sense of authenticity that consumers crave.

For entrepreneurs looking for business ideas in Italy, tapping into the artisanal crafts industry is a promising venture. Whether it’s importing and selling Italian-made products in international markets or partnering with local artisans to create unique designs, there are plenty of opportunities to capitalize on the demand for handmade goods. Additionally, with the rise of e-commerce, it has become easier than ever to connect with artisans and customers from all over the world, making this an ideal time to venture into the artisanal crafts business.

By supporting and promoting artisanal crafts, not only are entrepreneurs contributing to the preservation of Italy’s heritage and craftsmanship tradition, but they are also helping local artisans sustain their livelihoods. With a growing appreciation for handmade, sustainable products, there is no doubt that artisanal crafts will continue to thrive in Italy and beyond. So, whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur or simply a lover of unique, handcrafted goods, exploring the world of Italian artisanal crafts is an opportunity worth exploring.

Education and Language Services: Meeting the Demand in Italy

​Italy is a country known for its rich history, beautiful landscapes, and delicious cuisine. However, one aspect that often goes unnoticed is the growing demand for education and language services in the country. With its booming tourism industry and the need for Italians to communicate effectively in English, there is a significant opportunity for entrepreneurs to tap into this market and offer valuable services.

One business idea that has gained traction in Italy is language schools. These schools offer English language courses for both children and adults, helping them to improve their language skills for personal and professional growth. With English being the international language of business, many Italians are eager to learn and enhance their fluency in order to excel in the competitive job market. By offering tailored courses, such as business English or conversational English for travel, language schools can cater to the diverse needs of their customers.

In addition to language schools, another business idea that is gaining popularity in Italy is translation services. As more businesses expand globally, the demand for accurate and professional translations is on the rise. Whether it is translating documents, websites, or marketing materials, there is a constant need for individuals who can bridge the language barrier and provide accurate translations. Offering these services can be a lucrative opportunity, especially for those who have a strong command of both English and Italian.

Furthermore, with the rise of remote work and online education, there is also a growing market for online language tutoring services. Through virtual platforms, individuals can connect with qualified tutors who can provide personalized language lessons. This not only offers convenience for busy professionals and students but also opens up opportunities for tutors to reach a wider audience beyond their local area.

In conclusion, the demand for education and language services in Italy is on the rise. Entrepreneurs who recognize this opportunity can take advantage of the growing market by establishing language schools, providing translation services, or offering online tutoring. By catering to the needs of Italians who want to enhance their language skills, these businesses can play a vital role in bridging the gap between cultures and languages while also capitalizing on a profitable niche market.

Embracing Technology: Tech Startups Making Waves in Italy

​Italy, known for its rich history and culture, is also grabbing attention in the world of technology and innovation. A new surge of tech startups and entrepreneurs are making waves and transforming traditional industries with their innovative business ideas. This shift in mindset is reshaping the Italian economy, bringing it into the digital age and fostering a spirit of entrepreneurship.

One of the sectors seeing significant growth is e-commerce. Italian startups are revolutionizing the way people shop and do business online. Many platforms are offering unique products made by local artisans, connecting them with consumers around the world. This not only promotes the rich heritage of Italian craftsmanship but also provides a new revenue stream for small businesses.

Another area where Italian entrepreneurs are excelling is in the field of renewable energy. With a growing concern for sustainability, startups are developing technologies that harness the power of the sun, wind, and water. These innovations are not only helping combat climate change but also creating job opportunities and boosting local economies.

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are also gaining momentum in Italy’s startup scene. Companies are using AI to optimize processes and improve efficiency in various industries, such as healthcare and manufacturing. These advancements have the potential to transform the way businesses operate and streamline operations.

Italy may be known for its traditional industries, but the influx of tech startups is changing the landscape. With their innovative business ideas and determination, these entrepreneurs are creating opportunities, fostering economic growth, and putting Italy on the map as a hub for technological advancements. Embracing technology will undoubtedly be a game changer for Italy, as it continues to evolve and adapt in a digital world.


In conclusion, Italy offers a diverse range of business opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to establish successful ventures. The thriving tourism and hospitality industry, the flourishing food and beverage sector, the fashion and design industry, the renewable energy sector, and the digital landscape provide avenues for exploring. By carefully considering the market trends and demands, entrepreneurs can set up businesses that cater to the unique Italian lifestyle and capture the essence of this vibrant country.

The Italian Way of Life

Italy’s passion for life, art, food, and fashion offers a unique backdrop for businesses to thrive. The country’s rich culture and history inspire creativity and ingenuity, ensuring that entrepreneurs can find success in a variety of industries.

Where to Start?

If you’re considering expanding your business abroad, Italy should be at the top of your list. So, where do you start? From conducting thorough market research to identifying local partners and navigating legal requirements, there are numerous steps to take before establishing your business in Italy.

Expert Advice

To ensure a successful venture, seek expert advice from professionals familiar with the Italian business landscape. They can provide invaluable insights and guidance tailored to your business needs and goals.

So, if you’re ready to embark on a journey of entrepreneurship in Italy, ensure that you have the necessary skills, resources, and support to achieve your dream. Buona fortuna!


What are the top 20 businesses to set up in Italy for successful ventures?

Italy offers promising opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to expand their business abroad. Here are the top 20 businesses to consider:

What opportunities are there in the tourism and hospitality industry in Italy?

The tourism and hospitality industry in Italy is thriving, making it an ideal business to set up. From boutique hotels and restaurants to tour operators and travel agencies, there are various opportunities to cater to the steady influx of tourists in popular Italian destinations.

How rewarding is the food and beverage industry in Italy?

Italy is known for its culinary delights, and setting up a business in the food and beverage industry can be highly rewarding. Whether it’s a traditional trattoria, a gelateria, or a wine shop, the options are endless for entrepreneurs with a passion for Italian cuisine.

What business opportunities are there in the fashion and design industry in Italy?

Italy is synonymous with fashion and design, making it a prime location to start a business in this industry. From clothing boutiques and accessory stores to interior design firms and furniture makers, there are numerous avenues to tap into Italy’s rich artistic heritage.

How can I explore business prospects in the renewable energy sector in Italy?

With a growing focus on sustainability, the renewable energy sector in Italy presents great business prospects. From solar panel installation and wind farms to energy consulting and green technology startups, investing in renewable energy can be both profitable and environmentally beneficial.

What opportunities exist in the e-commerce and online services industry in Italy?

The rise of e-commerce and online services has opened up new horizons for business opportunities in Italy. Whether it’s setting up an online marketplace, offering digital marketing services, or providing specialized online consulting, the digital landscape in Italy is ripe for exploration.

Why should I consider setting up a business in Italy?

Italy offers a diverse range of business opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to establish successful ventures. From the thriving tourism and hospitality industry to the flourishing sectors of food and beverage, fashion and design, renewable energy, and e-commerce, there is something for everyone. By carefully considering the market demands and trends, entrepreneurs can set up businesses that cater to the unique Italian lifestyle and capture the essence of this vibrant country. So, if you’re considering expanding your business abroad, Italy should be at the top of your list.

Final thoughts about Italy

Thank you for reading this article. You can continue to explore our articles about Italy in our Blog or access some other articles about Italian Education and Housing, how to start a Business and Statistics, Finance and Travel Business. If you need services related to Italian website content and SEO, company formations, nominee services, banking or payment processing services, please get in touch, and we will introduce you to our trusted partners.

External Support And Advice Links

If you are planning to start a business in Italy, here are some helpful resources for the process:

Request a call back in the Form below

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Leave a comment