From March 16 to 18, we welcomed a delegation of 11 senior officials and entrepreneurs from Ticino, Switzerland, from various sectors including life sciences, fashion, tech and public service. An hour’s drive from Milan, the Ticino region is the Swiss gateway to Northern Italy – one of Europe’s leading commercial and industrial powerhouses.

On Wednesday, March 16, the delegation visited the swissnex office located in the WeWork Charging Bull co-working space in the heart of the Financial District. Gabriele Donati, Co-founder of the Swiss company TimeRepublik gave a short presentation about his startup and why New York is a great place to operate from. The group then met with VC investor Alessandro Piol to learn more about how tech companies are boosting New York’s economy. To end the day, the delegation visited Cornell Tech to hear about the school’s innovative and pioneering academic programs aimed at “helping students make substantial impact in a rapidly evolving digital age.”

The following day started off with a breakfast meeting with Jessica Walker, president of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, and a few board members. The Swiss entrepreneurs had the opportunity to gain useful insights on the most effective ways to enter the US market. The delegation later visited the NYU Leslie Entrepreneurs Lab to learn more about how the school’s program helps students become the “next generation of startup leaders.” To end the day, Accenture welcomed the group in their offices to present the FinTech Innovation Lab, which connects proven startups with some of the largest financial institutions. The group also benefited from an insightful analysis of the current state of New York’s tech ecosystem as well as a vision for the future.

On Friday, the delegation visited the Fashion Institute of Technology and discussed potential synergies between FIT and the Ticino region, which is well-known for its know-how in the area of textile and fashion, and is home to the European logistics centers for many fashion houses.

We thank all the participants for their enthusiasm during their visit in New York and hope they bring back useful insight to Switzerland.