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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Innovation Support. Paris, a place where make your company grow

Paris is unquestionably one of the world’s most beautiful cities. Its image as a romantic city has helped to make it the world’s favourite tourist destination. But there’s another and completely different Paris.

As part of maintaining its dynamic economy at the same time as preserving urban diversity, the City of Paris has earmarked 10% (900 hectares) of its land for the development of major urban projects offering significant economic benefit. By 2020, the stock of commercial real estate will be 18 million m² (see inset), part of which is specifically dedicated to innovation, with the aim of transforming Paris into a laboratory of creativity, innovation and experimentation.

To achieve this reality, Paris has developed business clusters, enterprise zones and business start-up and growth centers to support innovative young companies working on the technologies of tomorrow. By 2014, 100,000 m² of such facilities will be available to house leading-edge businesses, with the focus on the Information Technologies, Telecommunications, Healthcare, the Biotechnologies and Design. The ecoatmosphere of Paris encourages meetings between people working in very different industry sectors, and facilitates collaborative working between laboratories, universities and companies. This enormous network is particularly visible in the competitiveness clusters that pool the expertise and skills of public and private research institutes. They coordinate the community of industry players, and provide support for innovative companies and researchers.

This highly fertile soil is a great place for Information and Communication Technology companies to put down roots. Bruno Maisonnier, Head of Aldebaran Robotics, looks back on the beginnings of his domestic robotics project in 2005. This ambitiously-innovative project would never have seen the light of day without the help provided by the département. “There’s a huge amount of support available in Paris for innovative technologies”, says Bruno Maisonnier. Having begun his business in the Agoranov start-up center, he “received terrific support that helped us cross the threshold to international recognition.” Designed as a practical assistant for incapacitated humans, the company’s humanoid robot is now known all over the world by the name of NAO.

Anticipating the essential role robotics will inevitably play in coming years, Bruno Maisonnier has been able to develop his product with support from Cap Digital, the competitiveness cluster for digital content, which brought together 13 partners (SMEs, leading R&D labs and users) as part of the ROMEO project within the Cap Robotique cluster. Cap Digital also hosts at least 100 other equally avantgarde projects, including TerraNumerica, the hyper-detailed urban environment digital modeling project led by Thales, and Play All, which is developing a crossplatform tool chain standard for the computer gaming industry. There can be no doubt that Paris is an ITC stronghold and hotspot within Europe.

Source : Paris Region Magazine

© Alderaban Robotics

Discover all members of Cap Digital, the competitiveness cluster for digital content, on Econovista, the free economic map of Paris Region

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