Life Based Value (LBV), led by founder and CEO Riccarda Zezza, has announced its first expansion outside of Italy. The company offers digital soft skills-based training programmes, such as Maternity As A Masters (MAAM), that harnesses soft skills gained through life transitions such as parenthood into business capabilities.
Securing a total of £1.3 million in funding for scaling the platform and starting its international growth, Life Based Value has also hired ex-Primo Toys co-founder Valeria Leonardi as its International Lead to drive growth in the UK and Internationally. Maternity as A Masters is now available in English for rollout to UK businesses.
Italy has 13% of female-led businesses, with a similar estimated number in the UK. This round of funding is all about the tenacity and entrepreneurial spirit of the women who lead it. Riccarda Zezza founded LBV after 15 years of management positions in the corporate world, where she was demoted upon her return to work after having her second child. She created MAAM as a solution to this common problem for working parents.
The company team also includes Milena Prisco, Legal Counsel, Fausta Pavesio, who is amongst the 50 most influential business angels in Europe, Elena Casolar from Opes-LCEF Foundation, Melody Lang, founder of MPA Education, with the VC round being lead by Impact Ventures from Hungary.
Every year in Europe alone, ten million people become new or second-time parents, and around seven million (over one in 10) people in the UK are carers, being depended on by someone else for support. By 2030, the number of carers will increase by around 60% to over 10.4 million. The economic value of the contribution made by carers in the UK is £132bn a year. Businesses spend fortunes managing their absences – and billions each year on training people in soft skills. Life Based Value allows businesses to harness the skills people develop as parents and carers – such as empathy, creativity, communication, managing time effectively and leadership, and allows parents to unlock new opportunities in their current roles and future careers.
Based on scientific research developed into a unique proprietary training method, the Italian startup’s platform is already being used by over 50 firms in Italy including Accenture, Danone, Boston Consulting Group, Amgen, and UniCredit. It is being piloted in 23 countries and 218 cities across the US, Europe, Southeast Asia, and Australia. Over 6,000 people have participated and the results have shown the programme can improve effectiveness in business skills by up to 35%.
Life Based Value has now focused its efforts on zeroing in on life transitions and their learning potential and has extended the initial parenting offer with a new caregiving program. Riccarda Zezza, the co-author of Maternity as A Masters method and CEO, commented:
“This last leg of the raise is an important milestone on our journey, one that has been particularly intense and strenuous – all the LBV team participated in the process and grew from the experience. This also signals the beginning of scaling and growing internationally. As I traveled the world I have seen first hand how the innovation of our solution is sought after from Germany to Japan to SouthEast Asia. This is the reason why our next growth phase, besides consolidating our position in Italy, will be outward-looking. We know that Life Based Learning combines wellbeing and personal development. We want as many companies and individuals as possible to have access to the benefits that this brings.
Melody Lang, Founder, MPC Education commented:
“I am extremely proud to be backing such an impressive founder with a strong vision I totally adhere to. I am thrilled to be part of this new chapter for MAAM: a solution that needs to be offered to many more parents globally!”
In response to the transformation of their market, Italian telecommunications company Linkem has been utilising MAAM to develop positive attitudes and skills in their employees, including self-awareness, empathy and listening, mental elasticity and complex problem solving, which have proved vital in coping well with this change.