Andrea Agostinone and His Life-Focused Entrepreneurial Spirit

Covid-19, with its forced lockdowns, has the public reevaluating how they want to spend their time and what is important to them. As a result, across the world, our relationship with work is changing. In America, a phenomenon known as “quiet quitting” has exploded in popularity. Essentially a recognition that workaholic culture and the hustle mentality are hardly worth it, quiet quitting promotes the idea that employees should instead work only the hours and wages they are paid for, and not one iota more. Despite decades of economic growth in China, there is a similar movement transpiring. “Lying flat,” known in China as tangping (躺平), calls on professionals and workers to abandon the importance of workplace struggle and similarly abandon material and consumer concerns. More than ever, people are looking to those who know how to live life with a different attitude, one that prioritizes meaning and passion, while still achieving success

There is one entrepreneur in particular who is showing the way. Andrea Agostinone presents a different way to live life, one that is still traditionally successful, while reprioritizing what is actually worth it. Agostinone got his start in Italy as an international tax lawyer, working in the conventional corporate job of mergers and acquisitions. Unsatisfied after several years, Agostinone decided he wanted to try something new, and in 2007 he sold his business and moved to the Baltics. It was there that Agostinone met his future business partner, and together they launched a real estate business in Estonia: Colonna. Colonna has since become one of the largest real estate operators in the region.

Parlaying his success, Agostinone a few years later co-founded Inbank, a commercial bank and consumer finance business that utilizes a high level of technology to streamline and improve people’s financial lives. Pioneering a concept known as “embedded finance,” Inbank partners with other retail businesses to make borrowing money for an expensive product easier than traditional models.

Agostinone, despite his tremendous success in the world of finance, is quick to point out that he spends no more than a quarter of his time on business. Instead, he has adopted an unparalleled exuberance for life, in which he prioritizes the things in life that bring him joy. Money is not the goal but simply enables more enriching experiences. For Agostinone, flying planes has been his greatest pursuit. Agostinone owns two small planes, which he uses to commute across Europe. Sitting in what would be considered a tiny plane by modern standards, Agostinone chases that intensity of experience when he is off the beaten path, flying over isolated parts of the world.

Just last year, he volunteered as a ferry pilot to transport a plane from Bologna, Italy to Taipei City, Taiwan. Taking over a week, Agostinone and his co-pilot made stops in remote Siberia and Mongolia, as well as South Korea and Japan before arriving. On the way, troubles included runways engulfed by snow, fuel pumps that did not pump, and a circuitous route that avoided North Korean territory.

As Agostinone demonstrates, it is possible to achieve financial success and dedicate most of one’s life to pursuits that bring one joy. Agostinone shows other entrepreneurs a way forward that gets them off the traditional conveyor belt of making money and then dying. At a time when economic uncertainty and existential angst loom over many, Agostinone is a shining, and necessary, living example of how to find joy and meaning during one’s lifetime.

To follow Andrea Agostinone on Instagram, you can click here.

Written in partnership with Ascend