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Who is ABZERO?

ABzero is a start-up that has developed the Smart Capsule®, an autonomous multimodal system for the delivery of blood, blood components, organs, medications, and vaccines, enabling medical personnel to use drones in a simple and immediate manner while complying with regulations, ensuring the quality of the transported goods, and providing automatic and completely secure delivery.

How did the idea originate and what inspired it?

The idea originated from Giuseppe Tortora and Andrea Cannas, blood donors who have always been passionate about innovation and flight. It developed further through one of the founder’s research experiences at Sant’Anna School, from which ABZERO is a spin-off.

ABzero was born from the need to offer an alternative and more efficient system for the traditional transport of blood, medications, and organs between hospitals.

Special transports are generally very costly everywhere, and despite stringent regulations, it is estimated that more than 40% of these transports do not meet the imposed conditions. This often exposes the quality of blood to risk, resulting in significant consequences for the costs and risks of the healthcare system. Moreover, as is known, in Italy, blood can only be donated, and while the demand is constantly increasing, donations are not keeping pace. Therefore, it is a primary duty to strive to implement virtuous practices to preserve available blood and blood products.

The name “ABzero” refers to blood groups: A, B, O, AB, and Rh.

How is the product protected?

The product is protected by 5 patents extended internationally, along with registered designs and trademarks.

Furthermore, the product includes the innovative SPOKE software, which also enables healthcare users to manage the drone system intuitively. The Artificial Intelligence integrated into the Smart Capsule ensures that the valuable cargo is delivered to its destination as planned.

Who are the current partners and what have they done?

The founders are Giuseppe Tortora, with research experience at Sant’Anna School and in a medical startup, and Andrea Cannas, an entrepreneur and expert in security systems.

The initial team expanded with the entry of Sergio Zamboni, with over forty years of experience in the industry, Donatello Amicone, a medical device designer with experience in startups, and Rosanna Zaza, an expert in fundraising and corporate strategy.

The entire team’s resumes are available in the dedicated section of the “ABZERO s.r.l.” offer box on the website www.starsup.it.

What are the market dimensions?

The blood bag transport market is worth approximately €6 billion globally. If we add the market for sample and organ transport, it reaches €120 billion. €105 million is a conservative estimate of the value of the Italian market alone.

The consumer transport market, where the Peer2Air service would fit, is worth €100 billion.

What developments are foreseen?

The industrial plan foresees acquiring customers through continuous experimental services with hospitals (some already in progress), which will be gradually converted into contracts. For a more impactful market penetration, the service will also be proposed to traditional logistics operators who already hold such contracts with the public administration. Growth in the B2B medical transport market will be complemented by exploring the B2C service through Peer2Air, towards which we have high expectations, only partially represented in the business plan.

What is Peer2Air and why might it be successful?

From the autonomous drone transport system in the medical field and an idea by Nicolino Di Carlo, Peer2Air is born, a revolutionary sustainable and inclusive delivery system. In addition to the classic channels related to food delivery, such as Deliveroo, Glovo, and Justeat, and to the pharmaceutical sector, like Pharmecure and Pharmaprime, Peer2Air is not limited to the conventional delivery market. Considering its very low environmental impact and its ability to connect not only users with companies but also users with users, there is a potential synergy with the second-hand market as well. In recent years, we have witnessed an exponential growth in reuse awareness, leading to the boom of apps like Vinted. At the same time, there has been a push to re-establish the reliability of platforms like eBay and Subito.it by offering a guarantee on the quality of products. In this once-niche market, now on the verge of exploding, Peer2Air offers the opportunity to access the service in peer-to-peer mode, without creating entry barriers that would normally stifle this dynamic, as well as the growth of small businesses.

Is it true that drones cannot fly in cities? Where do they land?

For services between hospitals, ABzero uses drones with a maximum takeoff weight of up to 25 kg. These drones can fly in urban or non-urban environments or beyond the line of sight of the pilot after performing a specific risk analysis (SORA – Specific Operations Risk Assessment) on the route to be served, to obtain the appropriate ENAC authorization, which typically requires 90 days for approval by the authority. Instead, for Peer2Air services, drones with a maximum takeoff weight of 10 kg are used because this lower weight allows for significant risk mitigation measures. Furthermore, in this case, no authorizations are required because it falls within the scope of the so-called “standard scenarios” identified by ENAC (specifically up to 3 km).

The system will land in a reserved space at the hospital or on the p2pad platform, designed to be installed on the balcony, window, or garden and capable of withstanding up to 20 kg (much more than the fully loaded drone).

How much autonomy does the blood transport service have?

The Smart Capsule is powered by rechargeable batteries and has a range of G, sufficient to carry out numerous transports before needing to be recharged.

Typically, the drone has a range of about 20 minutes, enough for a fully loaded flight of about 8 km at approximately 55 km/h, but there are already drones with hybrid technology capable of extending the range to cover up to 80 km.

How will the funds raised be utilized?

The financial resources obtained through the campaign will be primarily allocated to the commercial expansion of the innovative drone-based material transport service in the healthcare sector (blood, organs, and other perishable medical components), to enhance and refine the already developed hardware and software, and to actively explore the possibility of extending the drone transport service to deliveries of lighter consumer goods among individuals, completing the Proof of Concept of the Peer2Air service.

What participation is offered to investors?

The participation stake offered to investors in exchange for the financial resources required (€400K) is 12.50%, corresponding to a company value (pre-money) of €2.8 million.

New shareholders will be assigned ordinary shares, i.e., shares with identical financial and administrative rights as those of the founders in case of an investment equal to or exceeding €10,000. In the case of lower investments, “B” category shares will be assigned, which are freely transferable but deprived of voting rights and intervention in the assembly as well as information and consultation rights if a control body is appointed.

Everyone is allowed to become shareholders with an investment starting from €250. The composer present on the home page of the offer box allows simulating the share obtainable against the amount one wishes to invest.

What are the advantages of participating in the equity crowdfunding campaign?

Based on economic forecasts and respective cash flows, it can be imagined that over a period of three years, the company will enjoy profits and financial resources suitable for providing a dividend stream to repay investors’ contributions. Therefore, there may be substantial satisfaction in terms of capital investment remuneration. However, the adoption of an active dividend distribution policy might be postponed if the needs to support the company’s growth make reinvestment of earnings more appropriate.

It is also reasonable to assume that, once an adequate presence in the domestic and/or international market is achieved, there may be interest in an acquisition (total or partial) of ABzero Srl by a large operator (e.g., in the transportation, e-commerce, or pharmaceutical/medical field) looking to expand or complement its range of services.

Drone pilots who decide to join the project will be given preference and priority for the activation of local chapters of the Peer2Air service, regardless of the invested amount.

Furthermore, new ABzero Srl shareholders have the opportunity to benefit from significant tax incentives. Article 29 of DL 179/2012 (“Decreto Crescita bis, conv. con Legge 221/2012”) provides, under certain conditions, a tax relief equal to 30% of the invested amount, in the form of IRPEF deduction or IRES deduction, to individuals investing in the share capital of innovative start-ups (i.e., facilitated investment).

Regarding the enhanced 50% relief for individuals introduced by Article 38 of DL 34/2020 (“Decreto Rilancio”), it is noted that, being subject to compliance with the de minimis regime, it cannot be invoked by the company because the subsidies received for research and development activities have already reached the maximum limit of allowable State Aid intensity.

Given the complexity of the matter, it is recommended to carefully consult the implementing provisions of the relevant legislation (DM MEF-MISE 7.5.2019 and 28.12.2020) and, in any case, to seek advice from one’s tax advisor for the exact assessment of the applicability of these benefits to one’s personal case.

Any other questions?