At VivaTech – a world-class hub for game-changing innovators – Airbus put the focus on three converging axes that are accelerating the third revolution in aerospace: digitalisation, the electrification/hybridization in propulsion systems, and autonomy for urban mobility.
“We need to look beyond our traditional aerospace perspectives for innovation that will drive further advances in these areas,” explained Michel Sesqués, CEO of the Airbus Développement subsidiary. “By working with an external eco-system of partners, we can take a larger view that could bring new and different value propositions for the full scope of Airbus businesses.”
Start-ups in the spotlight at Paris’ VivaTech convention
In underscoring this approach, Airbus’ exhibit at VivaTech provided shared space for 32 start-ups with technologies of potential interest to the company and its product offerings. This was in addition to Airbus’ showcasing of such futuristic conceptions as Pop.Up Next – the latest evolution in a fully electric, zero-emission concept vehicle system currently under evaluation with Audi for crowded megacities.
At VivaTech, the start-ups on Airbus’ exhibit covered a wide range of concepts, from a social mobile app for creating and sharing space-based pictures of Earth to a global crowd-sourced network of small radio receivers that could provide lower-cost delivery of aircraft data.
Also at VivaTech, Airbus awarded grants valued from 3,800 to 10,000 euros to 27 start-ups that answered a call for proposals in technological areas of interest from across the Airbus group. Airbus Développement regional manager Laurent Legendre said 67 responses were judged to be of interest, and the financial grants officially presented at VivaTech will help these 27 selected companies move ahead with their ideas.
“In addition to the funding, we will work with these start-ups for three years, using Airbus Développement as the conduit into Airbus’ community of engineers – and potentially taking the ideas to a Proof of Concept phase,” Legendre added.
By working with an external eco-system of partners, we can take a larger view that could bring new and different value propositions for the full scope of Airbus businesses.
Michel Sesqués, CEO of the Airbus Développement subsidiary