Lessons learnt from a startup experience: funding to exit

Dante Malagrino

Presenter: Dante Malagrino
Monday 12th March, 15:30
Location: Maxwell conference room” – 5th floor of the Electronic Department
Politecnico di Torino – Corso Castelfidardo 42, Torino


This session will be highly interactive and will focus on the experience of Dante founding and leading Embrane from the early days all the way to the acquisition by Cisco in 2015. Dante will review key aspects of what makes a company successful, including fund-raising strategies, board management, product/market fit, partnerships, hiring/firing, and other key lessons he learnt during his tenure at Embrane, and more broadly as part of his everyday professional life in Silicon Valley.


Dante graduated from Politecnico di Torino in 1997 and got his Ph.D. in 2002. He moved to Silicon Valley early on in his career and has held several technical and business positions in Cisco Systems, both in San Jose and London. In 2009 he founded Embrane, a startup backed by venture capital investors that aimed at revolutionizing the way customers use and deploy network services. In 2015 Embrane was acquired by Cisco, and Dante has since been Cisco Vice President of engineering, responsible for the development of the NX-OS, most sophisticated network operating. Dante is an accomplished entrepreneur and a general manager with a strong technical background, a passion for innovation and a very diverse operational experience in both startups and large company environments. When he is not thinking about the future of networking, Dante enjoys traveling, scuba diving, and cooking traditional Neapolitan pizza from scratch.