529: the figure has just been released! With 529 startups registered this year, the EDF Pulse Awards have double the number of candidates. A closer look at the key figures for this 4th edition.
There is a new category taking the lead in the applications, along with more innovative projects and more diversity.
This new edition is a promising one, since 529 startups have taken up the challenge of inventing our electrical future. 529 is almost twice the figure for the previous edition - which nonetheless had 297 candidates - and represents an almost 78% increase. Among the startups registered, 413 are French and 116 are European, representing 28%. England, where the EDF Energy Pulse Awards crowned 5 winners on 17 February 2017, is ahead of the pack with 33 candidate projects.
As each year, the rate of participation exceeds our expectations: a 75% increase in the participation rate compared to last year, which is more than the last two editions combined! In the space of 4 years, EDF Pulse has transitioned from an innovative contest to a not-to-be-missed event for French startups, and increasingly for European ones.
Leïla Turner, CEO of FABERNOVEL
More startups... and more female startuppers!
This year there are many more female candidates, with 208 of the 529 projects presented led by mixed teams, for a total of 39%. Caroline Ramade, General Delegate of Paris Pionnières, the Paris-based incubator founded in 2005 and dedicated to women entrepreneurs, shares her enthusiasm. "39% is more than the national average for women entrepreneurs! For Paris Pionnières this is a huge success, and we are proud to have been able to attract mixed startups to this high added value contest. When we take the time to engage with women and address them directly, they feel involved and they apply".
In launching this 4th edition in partnership with Paris Pionnières, the EDF Pulse Awards aimed to boost the diversity of applicants and thus increase the chances of awards going to women entrepreneurs. This figure bodes very well for the remainder of the competition and more broadly for female entrepreneurship, although there is undeniably a long way to go to achieve equality.
In a recent interview Carline Ramade explained that we need to "propose extremely concrete actions to change the status quo". In seeking to showcase more female startuppers, the EDF Pulse Awards' push for greater diversity should inspire new women tech champions!
Smart Business, a successful category
This 4th edition broadens the scope to include new innovations, by creating the Smart Business category, in addition to the more "historic" categories such as Smart Home, Smart City and Smart Health.
The Smart Business award will recognise innovations that contribute to building companies and the industry of the future, by improving the operational, technical, energy and environmental performance of people and organisations.
Although this category has only just entered the competition, it has already been a great success with 187 startups registered, the largest number of participants. Guillaume Sagnes, coach of the EDF Pulse Agency can barely hide his enthusiasm: "The success of the Smart Business category confirms the trend that I am observing every day with our customers. Innovation is very much the core of any business venture and drives the creation of new spaces, new businesses and new forms of collaboration. I can't wait to discover all of these projects!"
Guillaume Sagnes is Business & Digital Marketing Manager at @Koredge_agency. He has agreed to support the startup finalists in the Smart Business category for this 4th edition.
Which startups will invent our electrical future?
On 8 March, the candidate startups submitted their application, their pitch and their video. The 529 applications are now in the hands of the expert committees responsible for selection. A panel of experts will then have the tricky task of selecting 12 to 16 finalists, to be revealed in May.
These 529 new applications set the tone for this 4th edition of the EDF Pulse Awards. Will this edition be a tribute to women entrepreneurs by recognising one or more female startups? Will it reveal to us the innovations that will profoundly alter our electrical future?
In an exclusive preview, Leïla Turner, CEO of FABERNOVEL, who is assisting EDF with developing and implementing the EDF Pulse Awards, gives us a glimpse of the innovations on show this year: "Chat Bots are a very important theme, following the inexorable rise of artificial intelligence, as is innovation in hardware with Virtual Reality and drones... these are significant and cross-cutting trends that we are studying daily at FABERNOVEL, and which are confirmed by our initial analyses of the Pulse 2017 crop, in all categories."
Check back with us in May as the finalists are revealed!