On October 17th, BFM Business screened a focus on regional FrenchTech. Louis Veyret, UMI co-founder, was invited to the channel’s studio to present the solution that has reinvented B2B market research. Here’s how it went.
It’s all systems go for UMI. After a successful round of fundraising in 2016 and receiving an award at TechConnect in Washington, we had the honor of being invited to the BFM Business studio. This is just one of the many events that has marked key changes for UMI in 2017.
Making an innovation a success
4 years ago, UMI entered the big leagues with a challenge: reinventing B2B market research for innovations.
It all began with a single observation: 80% of innovation projects end in failure due to an inability to meet the needs of the market.
These failures are often due to poor evaluation of the innovation’s market potential, a process that is often complex. It was to overcome this challenge that in 2015 Louis Veyret and Xavier Levesy founded UMI: a digital platform dedicated to innovation. The solution enables projects of any stage to integrate market feedback into the development process, whilst also generating potential business opportunities.
After 2 years of R&D, we’ve developed proprietary algorithms that explore the web and interact with the 600 million qualified professionals to be found there. UMI’s specialty is the ability to very precisely target the professionals interested in a particular innovation and collect around 40 objective opinions in less than 3 weeks.
For example, the UMI platform can be used to validate an idea with the market, identify a promising market, abandon a project without outlets, find new applications, or even develop dormant patents.
Fast, global, and accessible, the UMI platform is designed for any type of organization, from start-ups to large groups, that want to make their innovation a success.
Drawing on the power of the regional network
Many French regions already feature a substantial ecosystem well-suited to the development of start-ups.
The regional ecosystem suffers less from the fierce competition that saturates the Parisian region, allowing startups greater public visibility.
Louis Veyret remembers the support BPI gave to UMI to accelerate its development, the solution having already distinguished itself from the mass of projects on the Paris circuit.
We also succeeded in attracting the interest of the great Lyon investor, Thomas Schmider, who invested in the company’s development by providing €700,000 in capital.
The regional economic fabric is also a key factor in the success of human resources. Recruitment is easier, with rarer, less volatile profiles than the Paris region, with the Lyon environment favoring more professional stability.
This year at UMI we’ve welcomed our new sales director fresh from Google, and we’re also planning to recruit around twenty more roles including developers, marketers, project managers, and more.
Opening up the frontiers
Whilst the Paris and Île-de-France start-up ecosystems alone represent around 50% of French potential, the Lyon region isn’t far behind. With 130 start-ups and 19 incubators, Lyon is ranked as the second-largest digital center in France. UMI has integrated itself into this ecosystem and accelerated its development on a both a regional level and beyond. Louis Veyret concludes by noting that when you reach the international level, regional borders cease to matter.