| Press Release

Escape, Flyinstinct, and EDIRIS start-ups awarded the 2021 X-Grant Silicon Valley and HEC Innovation Prizes

For the first time, the École Polytechnique Foundation, the Friends of Ecole Polytechnique, and the HEC Foundation are joining forces to recognize the most prominent entrepreneurs in each community. Antoine Carossio (Class X2016 & HEC 2021) and Tristan Kalos (HEC 2020), founders of Escape, as well as Arthur Ni (Class X2005), founder of Flyinstinct, have been awarded the 2021 X-Grant Silicon Valley Prize. Kristian Kredatus (HEC 2021), Simeon Kredatus, and Štefan Kredatus, founders of EDIRIS, for their part, receive the 2021 HEC Innovation Prize. These prizes were awarded to them on June 7, 2021 on the occasion of the Demo Day honoring the projects of the Master X-HEC Entrepreneurs.

“X-Grant Silicon Valley”: A prize to pinpoint talented entrepreneurs and promote innovative ideas

The X-Grant Silicon Valley prize was created in 2013 and is intended to reward talented students from the l’X (École Polytechnique) entrepreneurial ecosystem. It is designed to support the school’s work in entrepreneurship and innovation. To be eligible, applicants must present an innovative project involving a connection with the Silicon Valley. Each year, two winners are chosen. They each receive $50,000 as well as top-level mentoring. The grant is financed 50% by the École Polytechnique Foundation and 50% by the Friends of École Polytechnique, the Foundation’s sister organization based in the United States, thanks to generous donations by alumni living in California. Escape and Flyinstinct join a community of start-ups with strong influence: PriceMatch (2013), Dreem (2014), Cardiologs (2015), Plato, Tempow and Meteo*Swift (2016), Decidata and SpotAngels (2017), Astraveus and Totem (2018), Lalilo and Tarmac Technologies (2019), Omini and Monk (2020).

Escape: An API protection automation solution using artificial intelligence
Start-up founded by Antoine Carossio (Class X2016) and Tristan Kalos (ENSTA Paris), both graduates of the Master X-HEC Entrepreneurs


The development of the Cloud brings major changes in the cyber management of companies. In the past, infrastructure and application security processes were handled by specific teams. Now, new agile approaches are putting application security in the hands of developers. To help them better fulfill these new responsibilities, Antoine Carossio and Tristan Kalos have created Escape, a start-up which is developing a tool for developers allowing them to secure their applications and API (Applications Programming Interface) without lowering productivity. This safe solution is based on the creation of a “minimal digital twin” containing only the data useful for simulating computer attacks. Analysis of the various attack scenarios makes it possible to detect, prioritize, and correct computer vulnerabilities. The prototype designed by Escape is currently used by around ten companies.

We are very happy to receive the X-Grant Silicon Valley, which demonstrates the jury's confidence in our international project. The financial endowment that accompanies it will in particular be dedicated to the start of our operations in the United States,” rejoice Antoine Carossio and Tristan Kalos, founders of Escape.


Flyinstinct: A digital inspection platform to detect debris on airport runways
Start-up founded by Arthur Ni (Class X2005)


After starting his career in the oil industry, Arthur Ni created Flyinstinct in 2017 with the ambition to strengthen the use of artificial intelligence in industrial activities. Specializing in the field of airports, the start-up has developed a digital inspection platform allowing the detection in real time of Foreign Object Debris (FOD) with a minimum diameter of 2 cm present on the runways and capable of cause serious damage. To meet this security challenge, it offers airports the option to equip their inspection vehicles with smart cameras linked to software incorporating a machine learning algorithm. The data collected also enables airports to perform predictive maintenance on their runways. Flyinstinct now employs 12 people and has launched the global commercialization of its platform, which is already used by Paris-Orly and Lyon-Saint-Exupéry airports.

We would like to thank the jury who awarded us this X-Grant Silicon Valley. It will allow us to accelerate the development of our company, particularly in the United States which, with 1/3 of the world's airports, is our first target market. Beyond the marketing of our solution, we wish to expand our offer and offer new services,” says Arthur Ni, founder of Flyinstinct.


“HEC Innovation Prize: A vote of confidence from a network that believes in you and that you can count on!”

Created in 2017 under the leadership of Aurélia Setton (HEC 2002), the HEC Alumni community in the United States has come together again this year to encourage the most promising start-ups in the HEC network. In a changing world, where innovation and entrepreneurship are at the center of attention, the community of HEC entrepreneurs is a unique global network for developing talents and projects. With one goal: to enable them to multiply their ambition and express their potential. Rich with the entrepreneurial DNA of HEC, various initiatives are made possible thanks to the HEC community, professors, experts, institutional partners, partner companies, and thanks to the solidarity of Alumni around the world who represent a network of mentors and ambassadors able to support the entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

EDIRIS: Technology to optimize farm animal nutrition using artificial intelligence
Start-up created by Kristian Kredatus (HEC 2021), Simeon Kredatus, and Štefan Kredatus


Created in 2019, EDIRIS addresses 3 main issues: animal productivity, animal welfare, and emissions reduction. It turns out that a properly implemented diet positively affects all three aspects at the same time.
The start-up optimizes the nutrition of farm animals by using advanced automatic learning to analyze cow gas produced inside the barn. It then increases milk production, reduces emissions, and increases animal welfare. In just one year, EDIRIS has gone from the idea stage to that of a nationally-recognized and award-winning start-up, admitted to the HEC Incubator. Its founders have developed several functional prototypes which are active on several pilot projects. On average, they increase milk production by more than 20% and reduce gas emissions by more than 10%.

We are truly honored to receive this award especially as we know how brilliant the other contending start-ups are. We are truly very grateful to HEC and École Polytechnique, as well as to the donor community. Personally, I am sure this award will make a huge difference to our business. We will continue to work hard, stay consistent with our values, and we will not hesitate to solicit the community to develop new relationships,” says Kristian Kredatus, co-founder of EDIRIS (HEC 2021).


Kristian Kredatus (HEC 2021), Simeon Kredatus, and Štefan Kredatus, founders of EDIRIS, thus join the winners of previous editions of the HEC Innovation Prize including:
- 2019: Astrid Parmentier (HEC 2019) and Pauline Faivre (HEC 2019), founders of Tom & Josette, the 1st network of intergenerational micro-nurseries inspired by Montessori; Lucile Hamon (HEC 2017) and Késia Vasconcelos (HEC 2017), founders of Backacia, specialized in the reuse of construction materials and which helps construction workers to integrate reused materials into their operations.
- 2018: Nicolas Regnier and Simon Valadou (HEC 2017), founders of Data Soluce, a cloud platform that transforms buildings into predictable assets, massively reducing deadlines, costs, and risks for all stakeholders; Cyprien Geze (HEC 2014), founder of Toutes mes aides, a platform that allows users to find all of the state aids to which they are entitled and to take care of the paperwork for them.
- 2017: Clémence Fabre (HEC 2015) and Laetitia Pingel (HEC 2015), founders of Révèle, the 1st sports brand to develop equipment and protection for women practicing contact sports; Guillaume Laporte (HEC 2016), founder of Mindsay, a platform to create and deploy Smart Customer Assistants (Chatbots) for travel agencies.

About the École Polytechnique Foundation

Created in 1987 by twenty leading French companies at the request of Bernard Esambert (class of 1954), the Chairman of École Polytechnique Board of Directors at the time, and with the support of the Alumni Association, the École Polytechnique Foundation builds bridges between the business world and École Polytechnique, including its students and research professors. The Foundation is a recognized public-benefit organization that works to promote École Polytechnique. This status entitles it to receive gifts and bequests from both individuals and companies. The funds raised are directed to École Polytechnique programs, facilities, students, and research professors.

Files to download

Antoine Carossio et Tristan Kalos  Escape-jpg

Antoine Carossio et Tristan Kalos Escape-jpg

Arthur Ni  Flyinstinct-jpg

Arthur Ni Flyinstinct-jpg

Kristian Kredatus  EDIRIS-jpg

Kristian Kredatus EDIRIS-jpg