In France, 80% of innovations coming from start-ups never succeed. This is partly what led the co-founders of the company UMI to develop a platform for project leaders to validate their innovation with experts to assess the potential and accelerate its launch.
From the innovation council, Louis Veyret and Adrien Weil faced a problem in their search for professionals: it had to be done manually. Unhappy with finding no tools to simplify and accelerate their research, the two friends have embarked on the development of a web platform. www.umi.us makes it possible to connect innovative project leaders and professional experts. ” Many innovators do not do this work for cost reasons, we had to digitize the stage, ” says Louis Veyret, co-founder of the UMI start-up . For this, entrepreneurs have been inspired by existing software in the United States to develop their own platform.
The bearer of innovation can be a start-up, an SME, a research laboratory or a group. It is registered on the platform to “pitcher” its innovation by completing a sheet mentioning the characteristics of the company and, above all, the benefit of innovation for the end customer. ” This helps the project to be well understood by the future professionals to whom it is addressed ,” adds Louis Veyret. The entrepreneur tells us what his targets are, the people he wants to share with, and automatically aggregates responses from around the world about his innovation. Then we help the contractor interpret the results. This allows you to validate your innovation before entering the market. Because the concept of consulting platform has also developed around another observation, staggering: ” 80% of innovations from start-ups do not arrive on the market for lack of opportunities, ” laments Adrien Weil.
Reduce the time for a market study
” Our platform allows the project leader to interact as soon as possible with the target professionals to be sure that the product developed will be well received ,” said Louis Veyret. This is a strategic topic for European countries and the United States. However, since the innovation project is aimed at atypical or little-known markets, this approach is complicated. And a market study of sufficient quality is both time consuming and expensive (between 10 and 15 000 according to them) for small structures. A campaign in a country costs 7000 € via the UMI platform, and the web interaction makes it possible to reduce the deadlines considerably: in less than three weeks, it guarantees about twenty minimum return on the innovation.
The algorithms developed for the platform make it possible to find professionals by accessing a certain number of databases: function, job, level of responsibility, etc. They also make it possible to find the professional email address of the person who is not necessarily registered on the UMI platform. The platform provides a sort of address book. ” The bearer of innovation can ask to question only bosses or business leaders. We can look for targets in a fairly fine way , “continues Louis Veyret.
The start-up has made its first fundraising of 700,000 euros at the end of 2016. The latter will allow them to settle with major accounts in France, internationally and continue the development of the platform. By shortening deadlines, UMI hopes to solve the problems of innovation present in France for twenty years. The platform has already won over numerous industrial players, such as Michelin, Total, EDF, Solvay, Valeo and Veolia.