As some of you might have noticed from my Twitter stream last Wednesday, I attended the TechCrunch Paris event hosted by Mike Butcher, editor of TechCrunch Europe.
What can I say? Nothing, because the event left me speechless. I lost my voice although I did not even take the tour through Paris with the gang after the event.
But I can still write . It was really a great event and took place in La Cantine in the heart of Paris near la Bourse. It started with the announcement of the relaunch of TechCrunch France under the editorial of Roxanne Varza.
The complete program of the afternoon was as follows:
14.20 opening remarks
14.30 keynote presentation:
“Startups have to be flexible” Gilles Barbier – Tellmewhere
“Going International” Pascal Gautier – Criteo
15.10 panel discussion:
Women’s Panel Moderated by Roxanne Varza
Celine Lazorthes, Leetchi
Béatrice Jauffrineau, Femmes Business Angels
Marie Ekeland, Elaia Partners
Olivier Billon, Ykone
15.50 coffee break
16.15 Young Entrepreneur Keynote:
“Can you be a French entrepreneur with no experience?” Hadrien Gardeur, Feedbooks
16.35 panel discussion:
VC/ISF Panel Moderated by Mike Butcher
Guillaume Lautour, AGF Private Equity
François Tison, 360 Capital Partners
Jean-Christophe Capelli, FriendsClear
17.15 TechCrunch Pitch!
Olivier Cahané – SiteBay.com
Axel Cateland – Yoocasa
Timothée Le Borgne – Gamecreds.com
Paul Maglione – English Attack
Thibauld Favre – Allmyapps
Angela Natividad – Hypios
Cyril Barthet – Vodkaster
Guillaume Martin – Pictarine
17.50 Closing remarks
Before I come to the three education related pitches let me give you my take aways from the keynotes and panels.
From “Startups have to be flexible”: Most of the time it takes a long time to build up a start up, definitely longer than estimated and you will make many mistakes on the way but that’s ok. The important thing is to learn and to adapt.
From “Going International”: If you want to grow globally you need to be regional, meaning that in most cases you need a team in the country you want to target. Even in Europe most people prefer to talk to someone from ones own country and it also helps to ship around cultural barriers.
From the “Women’s panel”: According to the panel it is the entrepreneurial idea that counts, not the gender and the panelists did not have the feeling that they ever had problems being a woman in the tech scene. Quite the opposite, it might even help you because you are “different” and therefore catch attention.
From “Can you be a French entrepreneur with no experience?”: Was very interesting to hear the story of such a young entrepreneur. If you have the right skill set and the hunger for success it seems to work.
From the “VC/ISF panel”: Companies should know from the beginning what funding rounds they want to take, Seed, Angel or VC. Going through all rounds is not seen very well. Also French VCs don’t take high risks like American VCs. In France the maximum for a startup are around 500k Euro in funding, later on if the business model is proven higher sums are also possible.
There were some really interesting pitches which you can see on the event page, if you like, but let me focus on the education related ones in this post.
Yoocasa is a private social network for families. Especially for those who are not living closely together. Like any other social network the members can share photos and videos but Yoocasa has also an interactive whiteboard included which allows for example the grandparents to draw something together with their grandchildren. This environment could of course also be used for learning with your children when mom or dad are on a business trip. They just login to their Yoocasa network and meet their kids online to review the homework together.
I already wrote about English Attack! in my review about this year’s Plugg conference. In Paris I had the chance to meet with Frédéric Tibout, one of the Co-Founder for an EDUKWEST interview which you can also watch below.
Hypios is a problem solving network. If a company or institution has a complex problem it can go to Hypios and ask the global community to work on a solution. The great thing about it is that you get input and solutions from many parts and hence cultures around the globe.
After the event I made a little interview with Gregory Tappero, the Co-Founder and Developer of EdoBoard.com. He explains the new additional service to the EdoBoard virtual classroom called TutorsBox which is a backend application for schools and institutions and enables them to manage different teachers, students and classes and provides them with real time analytics.
Mike Butcher and the TechCrunch Europe team are really doing a great job in bringing together the European tech scene as a counterweight to the Sillicon Valley. Of course, there is still a lot of work to do but because of events like this there is already more exchange between start ups from the different European countries. I am looking forward to the next event which will be the Geek’N'Rolla in London.