France Tech Insight - March 2014

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Dear Friends,

Welcome to the March edition of France Tech Insight. As spring comes knocking at our door, the Office for Science and Technology of the French Consulate and our partners have a charged schedule ahead, full of exciting events open to the public. We hope to see many of you there!

You can find more information about these upcoming events in the Upcoming Events section of this Newsletter:

- Café des Entrepreneurs (Thursday, April. 17th) - The French executive-chef Jacky Robert from Maison Robert will be interviewed. In addition, two entrepreneurs will be presenting their startups : Sebastien CHRISTIAN, CEO, OtoSense Inc and Aymeric Vigneras, CEO, Sharalike.
- Café des Sciences (Wednesday, April. 23rd) - Olivier Henry, will present the work he and his team are carrying at the WYSS Institute and the fantastic opportunities that Organs On Chip offers.
- Life Sciences Research Opportunities in France (Thursday, May. 1st) - Dr. Jean-Marc EGLY, Special Counselor to the Chairman and CEO of INSERM will describe the new French research landscape and the opportunities that come along with it
- European Food Festival (Thursday, May. 8th) : a French-American Chamber of Commerce event which includes some of the friendliest and best networking opportunities in Boston!
- FACCNE 13th Annual Business Awards (Thursday, May. 29th).

As usual, in this edition you will find important updates on our programs and on science and technology news between France and the United States, as well as a number of job opportunities in France.

Enjoy this new issue!

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Innovation 2030 Worldwide Challenge - Applications open until the 31st of march 2014!

On April 18, 2013, the President of the French Republic launched the Innovation 2030 Commission, chaired by Anne Lauvergeon and under the aegis of the Minister for Industrial Renewal and the Minister Delegate with responsibility for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, Innovation and the Digital Economy.

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In an effort to confront the major challenges of the world of 2030, the Commission singled out a select number of key opportunities with very significant implications for the French economy. €300 million will be allocated in a 3-stage process to co-finance innovative projects from both French and foreign entrepreneurs that fall within seven strategic goals:

- Energy storage, whether from intermittent sources or not
- Viable, effective recycling of metals
- Development of marine resources in the following two fields: development of underwater metal resources ; less costly and/or less energy-intensive desalination solutions
- Plant proteins and Plant chemistry projects aimed at developing plant protein-based food products and new materials.
- Projects involving targeted therapeutic interventions based, for example, on genomics and proteomics, medical devices and/or high-resolution imagery (Personalized medicine)
- Projects that address the loss of autonomy in older individuals connected with robotics and healthcare-related domotics (The Silver Economy - innovation in the service of longevity)
- Projects involving the better use of data, as well as the definition and promotion of new uses and analytical models (Big Data).

Projects will be selected through a three-stage process :

- In the Start-up Phase, opening on December 2nd, 2013, projects at a very early point in their lifecycle will be selected. There will be two intermediate closing dates of January 30, 2014 and March 31st, 2014, and this Strat-up Phase will close when one hundred projects have been selected. Companies whose projects are selected will receive financial support in the form of grants of up to €200,000 per project.
- During the Risk Reduction Phase, opening on September 1st, 2014, support will be provided for expanded development of about 30 promising projects. In some instances, this support might be provided as grants of up to €2 million. A specific call for projects with a separate timelines and specifications will be issued next year.
- In the Development Phase, opening in 2016, seven of the projects supported in the Phase 2 will be given large scale support for industrialization.

It is possible to apply separately to the first and second phases of this competition

More information here.

Application there.

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Application plateform closes on the 7th of April !
Apply here !

The NETVA program (New Technology Venture Accelerator) offers young French innovative startups with a guided personalized coaching program which focuses on the analysis of opportunities and the development of technological partnerships in the United States. Managed by teams from the Science and Technology Office of the Embassy of France in the United States (Boston, San Francisco and Washington D.C.), NETVA aims to meet the need for the internationalization of young French innovative companies that are developing products with a significant added value.

NETVA is intended primarily for companies in the process of creation, or for start-ups or small to medium innovative French companies in all different technology sectors, who need to approach the U.S. market or U.S. partners in order to secure their future and their development.

The candidates will then be selected by a panel of Franco-American experts in May 2014 and will be offered a personalized program including three phases:

- A training seminar in France on how to approach the American market (June 30th, 1st and 2nd of July 2014);
The support of a U.S. mentors who will guide them in their search for partnerships in the US;
- An immersion week in one of the most vibrant ecosystems of the United States, Massachusetts (Boston), Silicon Valley (San Francisco) or Washington D.C. in October 2014.
During this stay, the entrepreneurs will benefit from seminars emphasizing the optimization of their business models, individual meetings with key players in their field of work and participate in events which showcase their project.

NETVA is a unique opportunity for young French companies to benefit from preparation and exposure to the U.S. market, based on the expertise of local specialists in entrepreneurship and business development in the United States. Since 2010, NETVA has accompanied 31 young innovative companies in their search for opportunities across the Atlantic, all of which whom, have benefited from:

NETVA relies on the support of key partners in France, such as RETIS, the network of French science parks and incubators, and Microsoft BizSpark. The program involves a total of 23 partners in France and the United States.

Since its inception, NETVA has benefitted from the support of the Law Offices of Marie Landel & Associates (, the Edenred USA company ( and the Law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (

In addition, several sponsorship opportunities are still available offering, high visibility, access to French and American entrepreneurial ecosystems, and networking with the winning companies and candidates.

For more information and to register online, please visit:
Registration will close on the April 7, 2014 !


Maxime Huynh - Deputy Scientific Attaché (Entrepreneurship & Innovation) - (+1) 617 832 4467

Thanks to our three generous sponsors: Marie Landel & Associates, Edenred USA.and WSGR

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Presidential Inauguration for the French Tech Hub

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On February 12, French President Francois Hollande, along with five ministers, two Presidents of Region and an important delegation of companies and entrepreneurs came to San Francisco to inaugurate the French Tech Hub, in the famous Dock Patch neighborhood.

If the French Tech Hub was officially announced in San Francisco, the initiative also includes the opening of an office in Boston. It will build on HubTech 21, which helps companies from the Paris region (Région Ile de France), and on a partnership with Ubifrance, the french Trade Commission in the USA.

With this partnership, French Tech Hub aims to propose a wide range of services to help french companies from France settle in the US, including:

  1. Coaching strategy
  2. Market assessment
  3. Business development
  4. Operations: Offices, administrative services

Since the official announcement, French Tech Hub has already expanded its scope, working with companies from Lyon, Grenoble and Marseille.

For more information, visit the website

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Café des Entrepreneurs # 3

The third café des entrepreneurs, designed by a team of French economic partners of Boston (Consulate, FACCNE, CCFL, Francetech21… ), took place on February 26. Thierry Hubert , CEO of Darwin Ecosystem and Philippe Clemenceau, founder and manager of Axiom Optics, opened the event by presenting successively their businesses and activities.

Afterwards our attention turned to keynote guest, Bernard Malfroy, founder and CEO of MindSet Rx, showing his experience questioned by his old friend, Dr. Jean-Pierre Sommadossi, currently Senior Advisor to PureTech Ventures and veteran in the field of biotechnology.

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During their informal discussion, Bernard Malfroy, a former researcher at the CNRS, with over 20 years experience in the bio technology industry (Genetech, Alkermes), referred questions to the heart of entrepreneurship, such as the difficult task of funding, and/or the rewarding feeling after being granted accreditation by the Food and Drug Administration.

He also discussed the differences in entrepreneurship between France and the United States. For example, while in France the fear of failure hampers any will, in the U.S., failure is usually seen as a rite of passage. Similarly, even if France knows how to develop startup with top technological resources, it is usually hard to grow and sustain.

The meeting ended in a good note with anecdotes about the family life of an entrepreneur, which is not always easy to reconcile with its professional activities!

Café des Entrepreneurs aims to share experiences, encourage vocations and promote reconciliation between the stakeholders of the ecosystem New England entrepreneurs, corporate executives, consultants, but also students and researchers, etc. .

Find all the information on the website:

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Entrepreneurship & Innovation

- Young French Startup EchoNest aquired by Spotitfy

The Echo Nest, a Somerville-based provider of software for music listeners to discover recordings and for media outlets to deliver it, has been acquired by the music streaming service Spotify. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The Echo Nest was founded nine years ago by a group of doctoral students at the MIT Media Lab, including Tristan Jehan, young french entrepreneur. Echo Nest was previously backed by $25 million of venture capital from Fringe Partners, Commonwealth Capital Ventures, Matrix Partners and Norwest Venture Partners. [Read more]

- Dassault Systèmes leads $14.2 million investment in US-based NuoDB

This week NuoDB, a Cambridge, MA based company specializing in distributed database management, announced that they raised a $14.2 million round with Dassault as the lead investor. This investment is an extension of NuoDB’s $10 million Series B round, bringing their total funding to $26.2 million. [Read more]

- Putting Boston Tech Companies On The Map

An entrepreneur named Jay Batson launched an interactive map called Boston TechScene showing in-depth info (like number of employees, company description, founding year, and funding raised) of local tech companies. Batson says the goal of the map is to help demonstrate the growing density of Boston’s tech ecosystem and to raise awareness outside of the tech community about the impact of the tech ecosystem in Boston and Cambridge. [Read more]

- French delegation at South by Southwest

For the first time France sent an official delegation at the famous festival gathered under the banner French Tech. An operation that takes less than three weeks after the opening of the incubator startups French Tech Hub San Francisco, François Hollande. Selected by a jury of experts, ten startups try to attract 30,000 visitors among whom are many California investors from finding new nuggets. Evergig present its video sharing platform concert Qobuz a streaming service quality and Openclassroom which offers no less than 800 free online courses. To see whether the French now have a chance to be heard in the middle of Texas …[Read more]

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Science & Research

- Call for Proposals French American Biotech Symposium (FABS) 2015-2016
The Office for Science and Technology in Los Angeles is currently looking for a French partner to co-organize the 2015-2016 editions of the French American Biotech Symposium (FABS).

Since 2008, the Office for Science and Technology of the Embassy of France in the USA has organized a new type of Franco-American one- to two-day workshop, the French American Biotech Symposium (FABS), centered on the research in these two countries and on organizing exchanges and collaborations between the two.The first three editions focused on “New Therapeutic and Vaccinal Approaches for Infectious Diseases” and were co-organized with LyonBiopole.

For its fourth edition in 2011, the theme was “The contribution of digital technologies to maintain the autonomy of aging people”. 2011 and 2012 editions were co-organized with Eurobiomed, a French competitiveness cluster dedicated to health and medicine matters. (More information below in “Previous editions”). Deadline for applications: Friday, May 23rd, 2014. [Read more]

- Strengthening French-American cooperation in space, science and research

On February 10, during the French President’s state visit, Geneviève Fioraso, Minister of Higher Education and Research and French representatives from space, research and higher education organizations presided over a signing ceremony for several agreements with their American counterparts with the aim of reinforcing bilateral partnerships. [Read more]

Inria, CITRIS and PRIME sign a partnership on Smart Cities

On February 12, 2014 in San Francisco, Inria (French National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation), CITRIS (Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society, University of California) and PRIME (the U.S. subsidiary of the Paris Region Economic Development Agency) formed a partnership to accelerate the development of ambitious research and experimentation initiatives on issues relating to urban centers. [Read more]

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Café des Entrepreneurs # 4

Thursday, April 17th
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Thursday, April 17th
6:00 pm - 20:30 pm

Résidence du Consul de France
194 Brattle Street
Cambridge, MA

In addition to Jacky Robert’s interview, executive-chef from Maison Robert, 2 start-ups will present their work through a short section of "Elevator Pitch":

- Sebastien Christian, CEO, OtoSense Inc ;
- Aymeric Vigneras, CEO, Sharalike.

After the presentation, wine & cheese will be provided by the Café’s partners.

Registration mandatory, seating limited.
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Café des Sciences # 63
The Organ-on-Chip project at the WYSS Institute

Wednesday, April 23rd

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Wednesday, April 23rd
6:00 pm - 20:30 pm

Résidence du Consul de France
194 Brattle Street
Cambridge, MA 02142


Olivier Henry, will present the work he and his team are carrying at the WYSS Institute and the fantastic opportunities that the organ On Chip offers.

The paradigm used by pharmaceutical companies to discover and develop new drugs is broken. Clinical studies take years to complete and testing a single compound can cost more than $2 million. Meanwhile, innumerable animal lives are lost, and the process often fails to predict human responses because traditional animal models do not accurately mimic human physiology. For these reasons, the pharmaceutical industry needs alternative ways to screen drug candidates in the laboratory.

The Wyss Solution

Institute researchers and a multidisciplinary team of collaborators are engineering microchips that recapitulate the microarchitecture and functions of living organs, such as the lung, heart, and intestine. These microchips, called organs-on-chips, could one day form an accurate alternative to traditional animal testing. Each individual organ-on-chip is composed of a clear flexible polymer about the size of a computer memory stick that contains hollow microfluidic channels lined by living human cells. Because the microdevices are translucent, they provide a window into the inner workings of human organs.

Lung-on-a-chip and Gut-on-a-chip

Wyss Institute researchers and a multidisciplinary team of collaborators seek to build and link 10 human organs-on-chips to mimic whole body physiology. The system will incorporate the Institute’s Human Lung-on-a-Chip (top) and Human Gut-on-a-Chip (bottom).
The Wyss Institute team seeks to build ten different human organs-on-chips and link them together on an automated instrument to mimic whole-body physiology. The instrument will control fluid flow and cell viability while permitting real-time observation of the cultured tissues and analysis of complex biochemical functions. This instrumented "human-on-a-chip" will be used to rapidly assess responses to new drug candidates, providing critical information on their safety and efficacy.

More information here

After the presentation, wine & cheese will be provided by the Café’s partners.

Registration mandatory, seating limited
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Life Sciences Research Career Opportunities in France

Thursday, May 1st, 12:00pm to 2pm
Lunch will be provided
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M. Jean-Marc EGLY
Conseiller auprès du PDG INSERM

Thursday, May 1st
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Lunch will be provided

Cambridge Innovation Center
Havana Room 5th Floor
1 Broadway, Cambridge


In the scope of a US Conference tour (San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Boston) on april-may 2014 around Life Sciences Career opportunities in France, Dr. Jean-Marc EGLY, Special Counselor to the Chairman and CEO of INSERM will present the French National Alliance for Life Sciences and Health (Aviesan), the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research and the ATIP-AVENIR program.

If you are a young scientist in Life Sciences interested in coming to France, do not hesitate to join us for lunch to get information about Research Career Opportunities in France.

Jean-Marc Egly was appointed Special Counselor to the Chairman and CEO of INSERM, the French National Institute for Health and Biomedical Research, in 2008. In collaboration with André le Bivic from CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research, France), he oversees, as Scientific Manager, the ATIP-AVENIR program which gives young researchers the chance to set up and run a team. The program has been designed for young researchers, with no nationality restrictions, who received their science theses (or PhDs) within the last 10 years at the most, regardless of their home organizations (public science and technology institution, university, hospital, veterinary school, etc.) and whether or not they hold a permanent position. The program is also open to physicians interested in research.

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Registration mandatory, seating limited
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European Food Festival

Monday, May 8th
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Thursday, May 8th
6:00 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.

French Cultural Center
53 Marlborough Street
Boston, MA 02116

Join friends and associates from the French-American Chamber of Commerce at the annual European Food Festival’s evening event which includes some of the friendliest and best networking opportunities in Boston. Participate in the fun and lively conversations while enjoying delicious foods, wine and beer from the home countries of your international colleagues.

Cost: $35 FACCNE Members ($50 Non-Members)

Registration required by May 1
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FACCNE’s 13th Annual Business Awards: Rewarding Innovation

Thursday, May 29th
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Thursday, May 29
6:00pm - 9:30pm

Royal Sonesta Hotel
40 Edwin H Land Blvd
Cambridge, MA 02142

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BIOVISION Catalyzer 2014 Call for Projects

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BIOVISION, the World Life Sciences Forum, is becoming a yearly event. The 9th edition will be held on June 5-6, 2014 in Lyon, France. BIOVISION is the place where key stakeholders can debate over the impact of the latest scientific advances on society and share a prospective vision on how to overcome Health, Environment and Nutrition challenges.

The 2014 BIOVISION Catalyzer edition, co-organized with Lyonbiopole, a worldwide bio-cluster, will capitalize on the success encountered in 2013 and leverage BIOVISION’s unique multistakeholder approach to foster collaboration, integrate innovation and accelerate the emergence of solutions for the benefits of citizens.

For 2014, all projects / initiatives must match one of the following 2 focuses:
FOCUS 1 :Immunotherapies & Vaccines
FOCUS 2 :Healthy Ageing

All proposals must be submitted through the online application form on BIOVISION website. All fields of the application form must be fully completed and shall not exceed the total length requirements. Check your mail, title, objectives and other information carefully prior to submitting. No edits will be allowed after submitting a project / initiative. Please note that the content of your proposal (except your personal contact details) may be used for external communication including publication on BIOVISION website.

Participation fee:
- No fee is required when submitting your application.
- Regardless of the outcome of their application, all BIOVISION Catalyzer candidates wanting to attend the Forum will be asked to pay a 280€ participation fee.

More information here
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"LIFE SCIENCES: Inventing - Creating - Having Fun" 2014

Grants from 1,000 euros to 2,500 euros per project

The Office for Science & Technology of the Embassy of France in the United States of America will financially support participations to scientific competitions, contests and games specializing in Life Sciences.

The Office for Science & Technology hopes this program will encourage students and researchers to participate in exchanges with the United States and France, as well as initiate collaborations between French and American scientists, and promote scientific research and practice.

Competitions organized in the USA: at least half of the team members must be French.
Competitions organized in France: at least half of the team members must be American.
Participants competing individually are also eligible. For teams, affiliations of the members must be clearly mentioned.
Grants may be used to cover registration fees and other expenses. Only one grant will be awarded per team (or individual) per project.

Participants are eligible to compete in any competition specializing in Life Sciences provided that they must be affiliated, at least partially, to the United States or France (organization, award ceremony,…).

Examples of competitions in the USA: iGEM, World Cell Race, Google Science Fair, XPRIZE, BioGENEius Challenge, NanoArt Imagery Contest,, …

Examples of competitions in France: iGAM4ER, Innovation Prize Universal Biotech, EUCYS, …

Applications will be evaluated by the Office for Science & Technology of the Embassy of France in the United States. Between four and eight applicants will be selected to receive a grant for an amount ranging between 1,000 to 2,500 Euros. The results will be announced approximately one month after the applications deadline.

For further information, please contact

More information here:

Deadline to send in proposals: 13 of April 2014

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Internship position at the French Consulate


An internship in Boston will be available for an American citizen full time university student.

Tasks description:

- Work on some specific programs related to science, innovation and/or entrepreneurship (research, technology transfer, entrepreneurship programs; organization of events, etc.)
- External communication of the Office for Science & Technology (newsletter, website, social networks): work in English or translating from French into English
- Draft or proofread and edit English language documents
- Help on some general administrative tasks, contact lists’ update

Practical information
- Internships last from 2 to 6 months and may be full-time or part-time, depending on the obligations of the student.
- The applicant is interested in Science, Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The applicant should be able to read and communicate in French.
- Interns will not receive any financial compensation, but will work in a stimulating environment

Candidates must send a resume as well as a cover letter in French to

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PhD in Physics at the Paris-Saclay Campus


The Paris-Saclay Campus hosts research laboratories from the most prestigious French institutions, located in the Orsay-Palaiseau-Saclay area (20km south of Paris). More than 1000 physicists perform cutting-edge research in the fields of optics, diluted and condensed matter, complex matter, statistical physics and nanophysics.

The “Triangle de la Physique”, a research cluster of 40 laboratories working in these fields, is maintaining a Web portal offering an extensive list of PhD proposals from these laboratories:

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Students interested in joining a high-level research team to carry out a PhD in this remarkably rich scientific environment may have a look at our list of proposals. After identifying a PhD subject in the list, they should contact the corresponding laboratory. Together with the potential PhD supervisor, they will examine the opportunities for grant applications, depending on the student cursus.

The main selection criteria are the excellence of former training, of the obtained grades, and the motivation of the candidate. In some countries, the French Embassy proposes specific PhD funding. The laboratories from the Paris-Saclay Campus may also submit an application to the call opened by the Triangle de la Physique until April 10, 2014. This call will provide, after competitive selection, partial PhD funding for students graduating in 2014 outside France.

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The Centre d’Immunologie at Marseille-Luminy (CIML) is inviting applications for group leader positions


Candidates are asked to provide :
- A curriculum vitae (max. 3 pages)
- A concise presentation of future research plans, with particular attention to their ground-breaking nature (max. 5 pages)
- The names of three referees.

Applications should be sent by June 15th, 2014, to

More information here
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