Interview with Daniele Rotolo and Marco Imperato, Co-Founder of Edgemony

Interview with Daniele Rotolo and Marco Imperato, Co-Founder of Edgemony

May 27, 2022 By Rosy Chianese

Interview with Daniele Rotolo and Marco Imperato, Co-Founder of Edgemony, the startup that helps students and professionals to increase their skills on Tech and Digital and also other companies to create their own software development team in Palermo.

The digital transition has now become an imperative for companies and we have now reached a point where we can no longer live seeing it as something distant from us or simply think that this transformation will lead us all to know how to use a computer or a smartphone. Behind the digital transformation there is a revolutionary concept: not understanding it or staying out of it, limits us especially in the search for work. In a world that turns to digital, even those who are looking for a job or professional growth must be digitally transformed. From today, if you want to take advantage of digital transformation, you have an extra ally called Edgemony!

What is Edgemony

Edgemony is the startup that acts as an engine of impact on the Sicilian territory, pursuing the mission of making Palermo become a technological hub, on the model of Lisbon and Barcelona. 

Edgemony can be defined both as a high-level digital training school, and as a “facilitator” for the construction of a remote tech team for companies. In other words, it seeks talent, trains them and helps them to work in global companies and does so by retaining resources in Sicily. 

Through the Master and Digital Program, whose teachers come from companies such as Google, Uber or PayPal, the growth of professionals, students and local companies is accelerated, as well as the talents that are trained thanks to the intensive bootcamps, will be included within national and international companies, creating their own Tech Team in Palermo. 

To learn more about this innovative startup, we interviewed Daniele Rotolo and Marco Imperato Co-Founders of Edgemony.

Hi Daniele and Marco, it’s a pleasure to meet you and thank you for your time. Tell us more about Edgemony. How and when did Edgemony’s idea was born?

Marco and I met in Mosaicoon where we worked together for about 3 years, until the company closed. It was just towards the end of Mosaicoon that we started wondering what we were going to do next. The easiest choice at that time was to continue to be managers for some company around Italy or abroad. We felt, however, that it was not the choice that would give us maximum satisfaction, we did not want to leave our land again and abandon the idea of doing something for Sicily. We said, “We stay, but as long as we gender a large-scale impact in Sicily.”

After several months in which we thought about what we could do to generate the greatest possible impact, we decided to found Edgemony, with the aim of making Sicily, starting from Palermo, a technological hub, focusing immediately on creating the skills most requested by the labor market today and attracting Italian and foreign companies to the territory to create their team extensions. In short, we thought that there is no reason why we cannot reverse the migratory flow that affects Sicily every year.

We therefore created the School of Higher Education, with the idea of giving the opportunity to Sicilians to be able to train by staying at home, but at the same time get in touch with the largest Italian and non-Italian companies, on digital and tech. In parallel, we started talking to several companies about the possibility of creating their team extensions here in Sicily, finding a strong interest in Sicily.

How did you launch your company? Did you use crowdfunding campaigns?

The company started with the capital of the shareholders, the 10,000 € needed to establish a Srl. It was a very thoughtful choice, we wanted to grow a company by “bootstrapping”, taking 100% of the risk, so we could be focused on the most important things. 

What courses does the startup offer to your customers?

Our training program is divided into 3 macro-areas: Digital Marketing, Software Development and Product Management (digital). All our training courses have in common a strong push towards practice rather than theory, but also great professional teachers/ mentors of the best companies in the sector, in Italy and abroad.

Within the Digital Marketing area today there is a Part-time Master in Digital Marketing and a Part-time Master in e-commerce. In September, a full-time Master in Digital Marketing is going to start.

As for the Software Development courses, at the moment there are Bootcamps Full-time to train software developers in the front end sector, on Javascript and ReactJS. As part of the Coding Bootcamp we have launched an initiative to reduce the gender gap in the Tech industry: Coding Women Sicily. We have involved several companies, among the most important nationally (Bending Spoons, TUI Musement, Facile.it, Subito, Docebo, Treatwell UALA, Moneyfarm, Giuneco, Aitho) asking them to sponsor scholarships. All with the mission to allow women who live or would like to live in Sicily to participate for free in our bootcamps and, therefore, start a career as software developers. In a few months we have collected 50 scholarships for a value of 150,000€.

Regarding Product Management, thanks also to the largest Product Manager Community in Italy, Product Heroes, part of Edgemony, we launched last year the first Master Part-time in Product Management at national level and only this year there will be 8 editions. 

How do you help the growth of companies which come to you?

We do it in two different ways. The first is through specific training on issues related to the development of digital products and OKR, the organizational methodology used by the largest technology companies such as Google, Linkedin, Amazon, Meta, Spotify. This process allows people to set a unique direction and create alignment on the goals and on results to be achieved, without losing months to set up super complicated procedures.

The other is to support companies to implement their tech team here in Sicily; This often results in starting to test the model with some resource that they select from our bootcamp coding and then push on the accelerator by increasing the number of resources interested in  opening a branch in Palermo. The latter, for example, was the case of a Silicon Valley company, Confidence Systems, which after months of collaboration with us, has decided to open its European technological innovation hub in Palermo. Nowaday we are supporting them 360 degrees in order to carry out this project made in Sicily

Future developments?

Our goal is to make Sicily a reference technological hub for Italy and abroad and we are working having this in mind. Thanks to the partnership with Confidence Systems, we are creating a real bridge between Sicily and the United States with the aim of having thousands of developers from Palermo, Sicily, but from the entire Italy, who can work for American companies. We know it is a very challenging and ambitious project, but we are convinced that we can do it and above all we think that digital and tech can really be the turning point for our country.

To do this we need a pool of talent able to express the skills required by the current market. For this reason we will increasingly intensify the training paths of our formation school. To speak in numerical terms, last year we disbursed 6 Masters, this year our goal is 18.

Finally, we are already working on the internationalization of Product Heroes and in the coming months we will launch international events on Product Management as well as Masters courses located in some European countries.

Curiosity: what do you think are the actions to be put in place to make Palermo a new model of Tech Hub?

There are many things we need to do to succeed in our goal.

If we think that on the one hand there is a very high rate of unemployment,  and that on the other there is a crazy demand for expert resources of digital or software developers (not only in Sicily, but in the world), it is evident that we have a huge opportunity, but we must all be able to grasp it.

In order to be concrete, we must first of all be able to involve as many institutions and other societies as possible, which share our same vision. If we do not make a system we will hardly succeed in overcoming such an important challenge.

Moreover, the real need is human capital. Sicily is rich in talents, which often, however, either abandon their land or are satisfied with jobs that are not satisfied by necessity. We need to be able to make information, to make it clear that tech and digital can be the real opportunity to work on important projects without necessarily having to go away. However, we must also increase the number of resources with the skills required by the market and this is certainly possible thanks to the work of training schools such as ours, but it cannot disregard the very important role played by schools and universities, with which we have just begun to cooperate.

Credits: 

https://edgemony.com/

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