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Digital Building Solutions for better-performing construction and buildings


Smart buildings
23/06/2015

By ENGIE

closure date
04/10/2015

Improving energy performance and reducing the costs of construction, retrofitting and operations. This call for projects is a partnership between the La Rochelle Agglomeration Community and ENGIE.


To propose innovative solutions for developing new methods and products that respond to challenges in the built environment including improving energy performance and reducing the costs of construction, retrofitting and operations. This call for projects is a partnership between the La Rochelle Agglomeration Community and ENGIE.


The winning project will receive:

-A prize of 2,500 euros, provided by ENGIE

-assistance from ENGIE subsidiaries and experts in accelerating the project’s development and realization

-work space and assistance in the La Rochelle Agglomeration Community’s business incubator over a period of 6 months

-opportunities to present the project to relevant organizations (INPI, banks (Crédit Agricole), business angels, assistance and short-term help from experts)

If the pr


Purpose of the call for projects: To propose innovative solutions for developing new methods and products that respond to challenges in the built environment including improving energy performance and reducing the costs of construction, retrofitting and operations. This call for projects is an initiative of the La Rochelle Agglomeration Community and ENGIE, in partnership with the University of La Rochelle.


Deadline for submissions: Sunday, October 4th, 2015.


Rewards and benefits for winning projects:

The winning project will receive:

  • A prize of 2,500 euros, provided by ENGIE
  • Assistance from ENGIE subsidiaries and experts in accelerating the project’s development and realization. ENGIE and its subsidiaries will determine the project’s suitability for this part of the prize.
  • Work space and assistance in the La Rochelle Agglomeration Community’s business incubator over a period of 6 months (up to 2500 euros worth of rent/assistance)
  • Opportunities to present the project to relevant organizations (INPI, banks (Crédit Agricole), business angels, assistance and possibly short-term help from experts)

If the projects require it, the winner will also receive:

  • Opportunities to conduct full-scale tests, whether in demonstration buildings, equipment management solutions, or connected objects
  • Expert assistance in testing and certifications via the Tipee technology platform (up to 6000 euros worth of testing) or from a laboratory at the University or EIGSI

The prize will be awarded an an innovation-themed event planned for the month of November.

Other projects (2 max) could be selected by the jury to receive the same rewards with the exception of the 2,500 euro prize.



Detailed description

Proposed solutions could be innovative in terms of the technology they incorporate or in the uses they offer for existing technology, and must be real in both the economic and environmental sense.

Projects must principally respond to one of the following goals:

  • Define solutions for maximizing building performance including overall costs and/or the industrialization of the project
  • Define solutions that maximize user comfort and the quality of lived-in spaces
  • Define economic and legal solutions for optimizing benefits for all stakeholders involved in a building project
  • Define an energy model for a site based on specific objectives and constraints and identify tailored solutions that lead to energy sufficiency in the way(s) it is used


Eligibility criteria

This call for projects is open to innovative project owners and any person (individual or company, startups, specialized schools, universities, etc.) that has an innovative project in the development stage, and who is able to move to or already present in the La Rochelle Agglomeration. Winners will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Appropriateness for the subject at hand
  • Innovative characteristics of the project
  • Economic and financial feasibility of the project
  • Existence of a market for it
  • Reasons for creating or developing a company
  • Potential for creating and sustaining jobs

Projects that have a sustainable development aspect (whether related to organizations, society, or the environment) will be given special attention.

Applications must include:

  • A description of the product, method, procedure or service and/or the competitive advantage of the product
  • The project’s current status in terms of its creation, development or development plan
  • An assessment of the product’s environment and market in both qualitative and quantitative measures
  • Depending on its stage of development, a definition of the main strategic orientations;
  • A financial element including projected operating statements for 3 years, and a provisional financing plan;
  • The CV of its creator and main associates, with a description of each person’s level of involvement with and contributions to the project



Selection procedure

The selection process will have three phases.

Phase 1: An initial administrative selection;

Phase 2: Selection of finalists;

Phase 3: Finalists will be invited to present their project for a selection committee. Deliberations will then take place behind closed doors.

Applicants will be informed individually of the selection committee’s decision.


Provisional calendar

Submission deadline: October 4th, 2015

Evaluation of applications and selection of finalists: from October 5th – 16th

Announcement of finalists: the week of October 19th – 23rd 2015

Finalist presentations for the selection committee: the week of November 9th -13th 2015

Announcement of winners: during the week of November 23rd-28th 2015




Selection committee

The members of the selection committee will be chosen by the organizers of the call for projects.

As of the project’s launch date, the selection committee is planned to include experts of the following organizations:

  • The La Rochelle Agglomeration Community
  • ENGIE
  • The University of La Rochelle
  • Crédit Agricole
  • S.P.N.


Application rules

Any participant who submits an application must declare that his/her project his/her intellectual property or that of his/her team.


Presentation of partners

ENGIE’s overall innovation approach aims to co-build solutions for the future with the full range of innovative actors: start-ups, innovative companies, inventors, etc.

To promote open innovation and be present within this ecosystem, the ENGIE Group has provided itself with a number of tools including the ENGIE New Ventures Engie investment fund, whose 100 million euro budget is dedicated to taking minority stakes in startups in the development phase.

The La Rochelle Agglomeration Community has committed to defining a territorial energy strategy with ENGIE’s assistance. As part of this, it has launched plans to create a new “low-carbon” district called Atlantech, which will include businesses working in renovating buildings for improving energy performance and facilitating the energy transition in urban zones.

The University of La Rochelle has a number of research laboratories whose specializations are directly related to territorial issues: the environment and sustainable development (the LIENs and LaSIE labs) and digital affairs (L3I). The TIPEE platform, which will be one of the constituent parts of Atlantech, will include a center for expertise, development and training, supported by the University of La Rochelle and 80 researchers from the LASIE lab.

The three partners were naturally able to come together to prepare this call for projects based on their common interest in finding innovative solutions for how to simultaneously address digital technology, energy and buildings.

Link to full proposal: http://eco.agglo-larochelle.fr

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