HEC Entrepreneurship Forum
A meeting for student entrepreneurs!
The 5th edition of the HEC Seed Entrepreneurship Summit 2019, held at the legendary Station F, lived up to all its promises.
The quality of the start-ups in attendance and the speakers (entrepreneur and philanthropist Alexandre Mars; Tigrane Seydoux, the co-founder of Big Mamma, among others) brought more than 550 visitors to the event on April 30th, at Station F, the huge Parisian incubator. More than a dozen student teams (from HEC, Polytechnique, Centrale Nantes, ESCP, and other schools) presented their projects in the hope of winning a prize of 5,000 euros and a nomination at the Blue Ocean Awards, co-organized by HEC Paris, Axessio, and the Ministry of Economy and Finance’s Directorate General for Enterprise.
A new generation of entrepreneurs
This year, we saw a trend towards the use of digital technology to meet the environmental and social challenges of our time. One such start-up was Toutes mes aides, which supports citizens by helping them identify and receive the assistance to which they are entitled. Another was R-Pur, which has designed an anti-pollution breathing mask for people living in cities. Or ProTeen, which proposes to use insect larvae to transform organic waste into fodder for livestock, which would create no fewer than 10,000 jobs in East Africa. But the team that won over the selection panel was Tarmac Technologies, founded by Antoine Dussolier and Maud Payan, both students in the X-HEC Entrepreneurs program! Their solution optimizes airport management and reduces aircraft downtime by 10%! The day was also full of encounters with experienced entrepreneurs who imparted the benefit of their experience. Tigrane Seydoux emphasized the change in mindset of the student body since he left HEC in 2005. “You are no longer regarded as some strange being from another planet when you choose entrepreneurship for the common good.”
Defending all diversity
HEC Paris held its first Gender Equality Week. The event provided an opportunity for leading luminaries to address the School’s students on the issue of gender equality. In addition to Gabriela Ramos, chief of staff at the OECD, there was Marie Beauchesne, founder of Ypsylone, and Hervé Navellou, General Manager of L’Oréal France. Marlène Schiappa was also there to present and champion the actions of her ministry in the fight against discrimination.
Do the promises of artificial intelligence herald a brighter future?
The question of artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence is a technology full of promise, and danger. How can we ensure that this technological progress is beneficial to society? That was the question put to the 4th annual conference of the Society & Organizations Center, which brought together more than 170 people on the campus on March 12th. In her introduction, Mitali Banerjee, professor of corporate strategy and policy, recalled the advances made by AI, particularly in the field of medicine. She also underlined the threats it poses to employment, privacy, and equal opportunities. The event included three round-table sessions attended by representatives of companies, research centers, and think tanks. They debated the issue and proposed possible solutions. At the end of the conference, there was a Q&A session with the audience, which focused on the role of HEC and the skills to be taught to future managers.
Mathias Bohn, Rodrigo Garcia, Marlène Luce, Roman Zanoli. These four students are enrolled in the strategic management master’s program. They went up against the world’s leading business schools and universities and won the Harvard Global Case Competition with their case study on the acquisition of Tesla by General Motors.
A high-flying partnership
ArianeGroup, the prime contractor for Ariane launchers, recently undertook an applied research program in partnership with HEC Paris and the HEC Foundation. The initiative, which aims to identify long-term development opportunities in the space sector, is supported by ESA_Lab@HEC, a collaboration platform created by the European Space Agency (ESA) with HEC Paris. “One of the primary missions of HEC Paris is to contribute to thinking about the world of tomorrow. Working alongside the ESA and ArianeGroup to analyze the prospects of the space sector is a great opportunity for us. Entrepreneurial spirit and the capacity for innovation are the historical lifeblood of our school,” said Peter Todd, Director General of HEC.