Launching a platform is a complex activity. We saw that one of the biggest issues for a transactional platform is the chicken and egg paradox that makes the early stages particularly critical and - very often - failure to overcome it determines the failure of the whole platform. What can we do when we're faced with situations that are too complex to handle on our own? Very often we overcome these difficulties by collaborating. Even in the world of platforms, it often happens to see a joint effort in the launch of a new reality. To tell you about this aspect, we decided to use an Italian case, wanted by the government, which could have similarities with many similar initiatives in other countries. This is SPID, the Italian platform for digital identity management. SPID means “Sistema pubblico per l’identità digitale”, which in English sounds like “Public system for the digital identity”. It is a joint project by AgID and DTT, two government agencies, who act as Platform Providers, with most control and regulatory roles. SPID provides Italian citizens with a unique and secure digital identity, allowing them to trustfully authenticate and access the online services offered by public and private entities, which can be defined as Service Providers. SPID is thus a platform that matches citizens (first side), who need a unique set of credentials to seamlessly access different online services, with the providers of these services (second side), who strive to enlarge their customer base and manage it with a highly secure and frictionless authentication method. We are talking about a national reality, wanted by the government, which can significantly help in the launch of a platform and in overcoming the chicken and egg paradox. Nevertheless, as often happens in the world of platforms, a service of this type only makes sense and has value if it is widespread. And here emerges the operational difficulty of launching a platform like SPID. Identity, before becoming digital, has to be verified by a person, often in a physical space, in order to reach all the people who are unfamiliar with the digital medium. AgID and DTT could have developed a large widespread network of physical registration points across the country...but instead they asked other players for help. A series of players - having already a wide and transversal access to the public - were involved in the project with the role of Identity Providers. We are talking about companies like Poste Italiane, the Italian mailing system, or TIM, the largest telecommunication service provider and many others. These companies have the role of facilitating one step of the value creation of the platform, in this case the control of the real identity to assign the unique digital one. In coming on board the SPID project, however, they are not acting as members of the second side. Or rather, while they offer the ability to access their services through SPID, they offer a portion of the activities that enable future transactions between end users and all service providers. In other words, with their role as identity providers they are not generating new cross-side or cross network externalities, but they are helping the platform to reach a critical mass that is useful for its growth and development. Interestingly, the Identity providers consider SPID as a business opportunity even if digital identities are totally free for all Italian citizens and public administrations do not pay for the authentication to their online services. In fact, Identity Providers can sell citizens further services, which complement the SPID, such as digital signatures for example, and are reimbursed for handling the authentication phases of private Service Providers, who can thus dismiss proprietary systems and avoid investing in their improvement. This case allows us to identify a new role that should be considered when we design the launch of our platform, actors like identity providers take the name of platform enhancers. A Platform Enhancer cooperates with the platform provider to launch a new platform, helping to get on board one or more sides. They do not generate network externalities regarding any of the sides, but they make the platform accessible, relying on their assets and resources. Their relationship with the platform provider is based on a defined value proposition of collaborative nature, even if they do not own the platform. Another famous example, still theoretical as we speak, is Libra, a permissioned blockchain-based payment system announced by Facebook back in 2019, which has been later renamed Diem. The interesting part of this story is that when they announced the project a set of companies were mentioned, such as Uber, Spotify, Lyft and many others. They are part of the Diem Association, a set of organizations that will oversee the currency…and collaborate in its diffusion as real enhancers. The chance of involving platform enhancers has the benefit of collaborating with other companies, potentially exploiting their networks and their market positioning, in one of the most delicate phases of the life cycle of a platform: its launch. Obviously, however, this makes the management of an already complex and varied system even more complex, by including new stakeholders into the ecosystem.