Published on 29 November 2017

This year, 13 student startup teams from across Université Paris-Saclay’s member institutions took part in the second annual Startup Challenge. After an intensive program, the winners will become Université Paris-Saclay ambassadors on a week-long trip to discover the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Silicon Valley.

The competing teams attended two weeks’ of workshops led by practitioners on topics such as value propositions, building a team, customer acquisition, legal practices, and the all-important pitch.

Coordinated by Yann Gozlan President of Creative Valley, 50 mentors (entrepreneurs, industrialists and investors) came to coach the students and share their experience and entrepreneurial vocation, helping participants improve every aspect of their projects. The workshops and group mentoring sessions were hosted at ENSTA ParisTech, Université d’Evry and Nokia.

On Tuesday, November 28, 2017, Nokia Paris-Saclay hosted the final of Startup Challenge. The student teams pitched their projects to a panel of mentors co-chaired by Pascale Ribon, Director of Professional Services at Université Paris-Saclay and Thierry Boisnon, Country Senior Officer, Nokia France and VP Global Services, Nokia.

After praising the young entrepreneurs’ talent and the quality of their pitches, the panel announced the big winners. FertiCicle, Fish’n Plant, Harvestr, Neopser, Peen Up, RunOptics, and True Spirit have been chosen as Université Paris-Saclay’s ambassadors. The lucky winners will fly to Silicon Valley in February 2018 to meet with partners and investors.

About the winning teams:


FertiCicle helps farmers manage stock effluent simply and economically while protecting the environment and creating useful by-products. FertiCicle is led by Anne-Laure Duhaut and Eloi Alves Ferracioli (AgroParisTech).

Fish'n Plant

Fish'n Plant miniaturizes aquaponics to bring an ecological and solidarity-focused dimension to the world of aquariums and shake up this established market. Fish’n Plant is led by Maël Levet and Marc Laperche (Université Paris-Saclay, CentraleSupelec).


Harvestr helps digital tech companies better understand and prioritize user needs with a SAAS web application, aggregation, and customer feedback management. Harvestr is led by Valentin Berthomier and Valentin Huang (Université Paris-Saclay, HEC).


Neosper is developing a software and hardware 3D visualization solution to help orthopedic surgeons operate with maximum effectiveness and efficiency. Neosper is led by Imane Chaabane and Thomas Ladhuie (Université Paris-Saclay, IOGS).

Peen Up

Peen Up increases the service life of parts in the aerospace industry using innovative high-power laser injection technology in an optical fiber. Peen Up is led by Alexandre Rondepierre, Guillaume Raynal and Yvan Pratviel (IOGS).


RunOptics offers an intelligent optical system to detect dangerous objects on airport runways. RunOptics is led by Suzanne Angelo, Daniel Blengino, Yannis Kolodziej and Thomas Corbier (IOGS).

True Spirit

True Spirit is developing the only testing device that allows winemakers to monitor the wine-making process without requiring the services of an external laboratory. True Spirit is led by Aurore Ceyrolle, Hugo Grardel and Luv Valecha (Université Paris-Saclay, IOGS).


photo des lauréats du Challenge Startup 2017

The winning teams of the Startup Challenge 2017