| Press Release

École Polytechnique: 5,000 m² dedicated to boosting entrepreneurship & innovation

Patrick Drahi (École Polytechnique alumnus), CEO and Founder of Altice, Eric Labaye, President of École Polytechnique and Jean-Bernard Lartigue, Executive Director of the École Polytechnique Foundation, inaugurated today the new extension of the La Fibre Entrepreneur – Drahi - X Novation Center. In order to extend the center’s activities, Patrick Drahi renewed his commitment by donating 3 million euros to the École Polytechnique Foundation, which itself contributed 4 million euros. The building extension, bringing the total surface area to 5,000 m2, demonstrates the dynamic increase in support of start-ups and reinforces the capacity of open innovation for corporate partners.  
 
Artistic view of the building extension – La Fibre Entrepreneur – Drahi - X Novation Center
 
On June 24, 2015, as part of the École Polytechnique Foundation’s second fundraising campaign, Patrick Drahi announced his commitment of 5 million euros in support of entrepreneurship at École Polytechnique, one of the school’s main strategic development axes. La Fibre Entrepreneur – Drahi - X Novation Center was opened during the summer of 2015 and the official inauguration of the building took place on September 17, 2015, in presence of the French President at the time, François Hollande. Since its opening, this entrepreneurial center (with a total surface area of 2,600 m2 at the time) has brought together all of the key entrepreneurship and innovation players at l’X in one dedicated and fully equipped center.
It houses an X-UP Early Stage Technology Business Incubator, an X-TECH start-up booster, an X-FAB prototyping space, dedicated areas for student associations driving innovation in the areas of AI, robotics and entrepreneurship in general, and co-working spaces.
 
Now identified as the core of innovation and entrepreneurship at École Polytechnique, the center has hosted more than 80 start-ups since its creation (such as Auxivia, ThrustMe, Exotrail, Forssea Robotics, Mainbot, Gyrolift and more recently LumediX, Sensome, NavAIgo, Accenta, Phyling, Omini, Unsupervised.ai, etc.), around 2,000 students and more than 400 “makers” are trained each year in the center’s prototyping space. The entrepreneurial community at École Polytechnique raised nearly 140 million euros in 2018, demonstrating the true dynamism of this ecosystem. 
 
Doubling surface area to 5,000 m2 to create more services
This new extension of the La Fibre Entrepreneur – Drahi - X Novation Center doubles the space allocated to the X-TECH Booster in order to accommodate more mature technology start-ups that wish to centralize their developments and teams in one of the world’s most dynamic innovation clusters. It also doubles the area of the X-FAB prototyping space that will be equipped with new Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) machines.  

The extension also offers new co-working spaces, six additional meeting rooms, a 100-seat amphitheater for hosting events for partners and stakeholders in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, and the doubling of the spaces dedicated to the aforementioned partner companies. This gain in surface area also brings together within the building all of the business relations services at École Polytechnique as well as the subsidiary FX-Conseil, which helps to bridge the gap between research and industrial and commercial development of technological advances.

This new 3 million euro donation from Patrick Drahi is in addition to the 7 million euros already donated as part of the École Polytechnique Foundation’s fundraising campaign to support innovation, entrepreneurship and the creation of MOOCs. This contribution, totaling 10 million euros, makes Patrick Drahi the first private sponsor of École Polytechnique.

About École Polytechnique

École Polytechnique, also known as L’X, is the leading French institution combining top-level research, academics, and innovation at the cutting-edge of science and technology. Its various undergraduate and graduate-level programs – Bachelor of Science, Ingénieur Polytechnicien (Master’s level program), Master’s, and PhD – are highly selective and promote a culture of excellence with a strong emphasis on science, anchored in humanist traditions. As a widely internationalized university, École Polytechnique offers a variety of international programs and attracts a growing number of foreign students and researchers from around the globe (currently 41% of students and 40% of faculty members).

École Polytechnique offers an exceptional education to prepare bright men and women to excel in top-level key positions and lead complex and innovative projects which meet the challenges of 21st century society, all while maintaining a keen sense of their civil and social responsibilities. With its 23 laboratories, 22 of which are joint research units with the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), the École Polytechnique Research Center explores the frontiers of interdisciplinary knowledge to provide major contributions to science, technology, and society. École Polytechnique is a founding member of Institut Polytechnique de Paris.

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