Mission France de Sherbrooke Innopole

12 July 2023

Sherbrooke Innopole has productive economic development Mission to France

PRESS RELEASE – Back in Québec, Sherbrooke Innopole reports very positive results for this year’s economic development mission to France from June 7 to 23, within the framework of the Année de l’innovation franco-québécoise. Several meetings suggest promising prospects for collaboration in the quantum technologies, video gaming, and digital technologies sectors, among others.

An excellent relationship was established with our economic development counterparts in the Grand Est region. Additionally, discussions are underway to deepen and formalize a collaboration benefitting businesses in both regions. A visit to Sherbrooke is also planned for next fall. Preliminary discussions have identified ideas for potential cooperation related to quantum technologies and to highlight the added value of an eventual sharing of practices in the development of an entrepreneurial community and ecosystem.

In Montpellier, Sherbrooke’s sister city, significant common interest was expressed during meetings with actors from the video gaming ecosystem. A new discussion blitz is expected, first during the Montreal International Games Summit (MIGS) in November of 2023, in parallel to a visit of Sherbrooke, then later during the Rencontres scientifiques Sherbrooke-Montpellier which will take place at Université de Sherbrooke in June of 2024.

A willingness to discussing ethical issues related to artificial intelligence (AI), cryptography and cyber security were among the topics arising from the stopover in Nantes. Discussions continued during the MTL connect event which took place at École NAD in Montréal in October.

These are just a few of the collaborative opportunities we will be exploring in greater detail over the next few months,” said Marc-Henri Faure, Director of Business Services – Quantum and Information Technology at Sherbrooke Innopole who co-led the mission. “Our objective remains, in the near future, to establish and maintain bilateral relationships that will enrich our IT ecosystem and propel Sherbrooke businesses, as well as French businesses that are looking to break into the North American market.”

Many of the places we visited are models we could take inspiration from during the setting up of the Quartier général de l’entrepreneuriat (entrepreneurship headquarters). Among these are the IOT Valley near Toulouse, for its entrepreneurial culture for and by entrepreneurs, BLIIIDA in Metz, a third party site offering meeting spaces and restaurants available to creators, artisans as well as technology based businesses and their related services, and even KM0 in Mulhouse, a private training and innovation site dedicated to the digital transformation of the industry,” highlighted Jérémy Laplante-Chapdelaine, Project Manager of Strategic Development Initiatives at Sherbrooke Innopole, who co-led the mission.

“In addition to the promising prospects for collaboration that we can already foresee, our Mission to France allowed us to truly position Sherbrooke as the premiere city and the first economy of Québec regions, and therefore as a true economic and innovation hub. Our business environment, our living environment, as well as the richness of our innovation ecosystem struck a chord with the leaders and organizations we met,” mentioned Sylvain Durocher, General Manager of Sherbrooke Innopole.

The founder and President of Station-SSCA, Elisabeth Nadeau, took part in the entire mission to France with great enthusiasm. “In fact, I even extended my stay in France, because I was asked to present our Bouge pour jouer app to a jury of leaders, professional athletes, and investors from Trophées Sport Unlimitech in Paris. This surprise invitation came about after my meeting with members of that ecosystem at the Viva Technology conference a few days earlier.”

Christian Beauchesne, Interim Director of the École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design (NAD-UQAC), which opened a campus in downtown Sherbrooke this summer, also took part in most of the mission to France. “The mission was very useful for us. We met with a number of video game and animation school representatives in France who could become partners, notably to bring French students to study here as part of an exchange. Discussions are ongoing and are very promising for the future of the video game sector in Sherbrooke!”

Four other technology businesses and schools from the Sherbrooke region also participated in selected segments of the mission: Skinaptiks (technological solutions in the field of tactile perception), Chemia Discovery (state-of-the-art automated microfurnace and microanalyzer networks), the Séminaire de Sherbrooke, as well as the BISOUS laboratory (Bureau d’infographie, de simulation et d’optimisation de l’Université de Sherbrooke – Université de Sherbrooke’s imaging, simulation and optimization office). The Montreal based business EdLive (edtech video integration, creation, and broadcast tools) who was interested in connecting with the French and Sherbrooke ecosystems, also momentarily joined the delegation.

The Sherbrooke delegation made several stops on French soil – in Toulouse, Montpellier, Rennes, Nantes, Paris, Reims, Nancy, Metz, Mulhouse, and Strasbourg – to make the most of its transatlantic trip. There were about sixty meetings and visits to innovation hubs, business incubators and universities on the programme, as well as three big technological events – the Viva Technology conference (VivaTech), the France Quantum Conference, and 360 Grand Est.

Sherbrooke Innopole’s Mission France was made possible thanks to the financial support of the ministère des Relations internationales et de la Francophonie du Québec as part of the Année de l’innovation franco-québécoise 2023 and Global Affairs Canada through the CanExport Community Investments programme.

Sherbrooke Innopole would also like to thank their partners who facilitated the organization and execution of its Mission France: the Délégation générale du Québec à Paris, Business France, AD’OCC, Grand E-Nov+, Destination Rennes, Nantes Saint-Nazaire Développement, and Choose Paris Region.

Legend: co-leaders of Sherbrooke Innopole’s Mission France, Marc-Henri Faure, Director of Business Services – Quantum and Information Technology at Sherbrooke Innopole (3rd from the right) and Jérémy Laplante-Chapdelaine, Project Manager of Strategic Development Initiatives at Sherbrooke Innopole (1rst on the right), accompanied by representatives from Sherbrooke, Christian Beauchesne (École des arts numériques, de l’animation et du design NAD-UQAC), Guillaume Gilet (Université de Sherbrooke), Rémi Robert (Séminaire de Sherbrooke) and Elisabeth Nadeau (Station-SSCA) are seen here in Montpellier during a visit to Université Paul-Valéry.

About Sherbrooke Innopole

Sherbrooke Innopole is the paramunicipal economic development organization for the industrial and high-value-added services sector. Its mission is to accelerate the development of companies from the five key sectors – Advanced Manufacturing, Information and Quantum Technologies, Cleantech, Life Sciences and Micro-Nanotechnologies – and ensure that Sherbrooke has an attractive and innovative business environment. It is mainly financed by the City of Sherbrooke through the Bureau de coordination du développement économique. 

Source: Sherbrooke Innopole

Back to the news

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sherbrooke Innopole’s mandate ends on March 31, 2024. We invite you to contact Entreprendre Sherbrooke or the Service du développement économique of the Ville de Sherbrooke for further services.
Thank you to all Sherbrooke industrial and technological businesses, as well as to all our partners for the trust granted since 2009!