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Other innovations 16/05/2018

E-solutions challenge for the planet

The non-profit association Grand Est Numérique is launching the 6th edition of #GEN, an event that brings together business and digital stakeholders from the Grand Est region every year. The 2018 edition will feature Bertrand Piccard and his Solar Impulse Foundation.ENGIE is a loyal partner of the event. This year we wanted to be more involved, and so joined up with Solar Impulse and the ADEME to launch an "E-solutions for the planet" Challenge.Christelle Bridey, ENGIE’s Local Delegate for Lorraine, gave us an overview of the event.

Grand Est Numérique is an association of digital entrepreneurs based in Metz. Every year it hosts #GEN, the 6th edition of which will take place on September 13-14, 2018.

The event brings together economic, political and academic stakeholders working in digital fields in the Greater East region and cross-border area, since we are close to Luxembourg, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland. The goal of the event is to help more traditional stakeholders get involved in digital issues, the digital transition and new trends such as artificial intelligence, etc.

ENGIE is a reliable partner of the event, which allows us to meet people in the local startup ecosystem. Among the major speakers invited this year is Bertrand Piccard, who will talk about the Solar Impulse experience and its foundation, which ENGIE is a partner of.

This year we decided to be a near-exclusive partner of the event, and as such we are working with the ADEME and Solar Impulse on a call for projects from startups about digital solutions for environmental responsibility


Why launch this kind of call for projects?

Solar Impulse is interested in sourcing new solutions and possibly involving them in the Foundation’s work as one of the 1000 solutions for a sustainable world that will be presented at the COP 24.

For ENGIE, the call for projects will help us stimulate the local innovation ecosystem on important issues involving new energy challenges. We support this initiative as a local stakeholder in the innovation ecosystem. It’s a way to give more visibility to our desire to work towards the energy transition, to support startups and identify potential synergies with our local BUs.

And for startups it’s also an opportunity to get more visibility during the event, to get in touch with the various stakeholders, potential funders and large companies that will be there for the pitches. Some of the startups could end up being integrated into Bertrand Piccard's 1000 startups and/or noticed by ENGIE, the ADEME or other major players as innovative startups.


What are we looking for?

We’re looking for mature startups or innovative SMEs, whether they’re French or European, whose business activity relates to the ecological and environmental transition and that include a digital component.

The themes of the call for projects are the same ones as for the Solar Impulse Foundation:

  • Drinking water and sanitation
  • Affordable and non-polluting energy
  • Innovation and infrastructure
  • Sustainable development of urban communities
  • Responsible energy production and consumption

These themes are quite broad, but must be approached through the digital lens. Applicants must have already developed a prototype of their solution at scale 1.1.


Provisional timetable:

  • Deadline for applications: June 29th, 2018
  • Announcement of finalists: July 13th, 2018

Finalists will be invited to pitch on Friday, September 14th, 2018, in Metz. The winners will be announced at the end of the event.

More info and registration


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