- Launch of the “French Blue Tech,” the first index dedicated to French maritime startups, by the French Maritime Cluster (CMF).
- Selection of 35 innovative maritime startups, distributed across seven categories, for their growth potential and environmental impact.
- 9 startups from the South region including 4 from the Cote d’Azur: Inalve, Dees, Bioceanor, and Pollustock.
- Major challenge: connecting maritime startups, primarily located in the region, with financiers mainly based in Paris.
Launch of the French Blue Tech Index
The French Maritime Cluster (CMF), under the high patronage of Hervé Berville, Secretary of State for the Sea, recently launched a significant initiative named “French Blue Tech.” This innovative approach aims to establish an index exclusively dedicated to French maritime startups. The main goal is to recognize and enhance the most promising companies in the maritime sector, offering them increased visibility on the national and international scene.
The “French Blue Tech” presents itself as a platform for distinction and support for these innovative young companies. It not only serves to highlight their growth potential and commitment to the environment but also to facilitate their access to essential financing.
On December 18, 2023, a ceremony held at the National Maritime Museum in Paris marked the official launch of the index. This was the occasion to unveil the 35 startups selected to join this prestigious index. These companies were chosen based on strict criteria, including innovation, growth potential, economic viability, and their contribution to environmental protection. This selection, the result of an evaluation process conducted by experts in the maritime sector and innovation, reflects the diversity and excellence of the French entrepreneurial landscape in the maritime field.
Furthermore, the “French Blue Tech” index intends to play a crucial role in creating an ecosystem conducive to maritime innovation. By connecting startups with large companies, sector associations, and even the National Navy, it aims to stimulate growth and the development of innovative maritime solutions. The initiative thus positions itself as a catalyst for the entire French maritime sector, seeking renewal and modernization.
Focus on the Four Selected Startups from the Cote d’Azur
Following a call for applications in October, a committee representative of the world of innovation and maritime sectors selected 35 startups, distributed across seven categories: Food, Energy, Environment and Biodiversity, Digital and Sovereignty, Robotics, Health-Biotech-Cosmetics, Transport, and Decarbonization.
Among them, the Cote d’Azur startups Inalve (Food), Deess (Digital and Sovereignty), Bioceanor (Food), and Pollustock (Environment and Biodiversity) stand out for their unique contributions to the maritime ecosystem.
Inalve: Innovation in Aquaculture
Inalve, based in Nice, positions itself as a key player in sustainable aquaculture. Specializing in microalgae production, it aims to revolutionize aquaculture by offering a sustainable alternative to traditional proteins. Inalve’s biofilm technology allows for high-density algal biomass production while reducing environmental impact. Recently, Inalve made a significant step forward with a 2 million euro fundraising round, demonstrating investor confidence in its growth and innovation potential.
Deess: Pioneer in Marine Cartography
Deess, established in the Nice Côte d’Azur Metropolis, stands out in the “Digital and Sovereignty” category. It develops advanced technologies for monitoring and inventorying marine ecosystems. Using optical imaging and photogrammetric reconstruction, Deess enables precise exploration of the seabed over vast areas. This innovation is crucial for the conservation of marine ecosystems and sustainable management of maritime resources.
Bioceanor: Water Quality Forecasting
Bioceanor, based on the Cote d’Azur, combines biological expertise and artificial intelligence. Its connected underwater weather station, AquaREAL, provides real-time water quality analyses. This technology is essential for aquaculture as it helps reduce risks to aquatic ecosystems and improves productivity. Bioceanor plays a significant role in the sustainability of aquaculture through its ability to provide essential data for optimal resource management.
Pollustock: Protection of Aquatic Environments
Originally from the Alpes-Maritimes, Pollustock is dedicated to preserving aquatic environments. It develops solutions to protect waters against anthropogenic pollution. One of its major innovations is a system of floating barriers that capture floating waste, including microplastics. This system is vital in combating marine pollution and preserving the biodiversity of aquatic ecosystems. Pollustock is a key player in reducing the environmental impact of human activities on the oceans.
These Cote d’Azur companies, through their initiatives and successes, perfectly illustrate the commitment and innovation of the French maritime sector, significantly contributing to the preservation and sustainable exploitation of marine resources.
The Blue Economy and Sea Economy at the Heart of the Nice Côte d’Azur Metropolis
More than 25% of the startups selected by the French Blue Tech Index come from the South region, demonstrating the region’s commitment to maritime innovation and the preservation of the marine environment.
The Nice Côte d’Azur Metropolis has made the sustainable economy of the sea and the protection of the coastline one of its priorities and places cutting-edge technologies and innovation at the heart of its development strategy.
A Pioneering Initiative: the Blue Innovation Challenge
Since 2020, the Metropolis has been organizing the Blue Innovation Challenge. This event aims to identify and support innovative companies in various maritime sectors. These sectors include port management, coastal protection, marine biotechnologies, and renewable marine energies. This contest demonstrates the Metropolis’s commitment to fostering an entrepreneurial ecosystem focused on innovation and sustainable development.
A Significant Maritime Economy
According to a 2020 study by the Economic Observatory of the CCI Nice Côte d’Azur, the territory plays a predominant role in the international maritime economy. It notably hosts more than 40% of the world’s yachting during the summer season. The economic impact of this sector is considerable, with a turnover of 1.7 billion euros and more than 1800 companies, employing over 8000 people. These figures illustrate the significant weight of the maritime economy in the local economic fabric.
Team Nice Côte d’Azur: Promotion of the Blue Economy and the Sea Economy
Team Nice Côte d’Azur plays an essential role in promoting the blue economy in the territory. By highlighting the Metropolis’s assets to industry professionals, the metropolitan agency for attractiveness and economic development contributes to strengthening the Metropolis’s attractiveness in the maritime field.
A Global Meeting: the United Nations Ocean Conference
In June 2025, Nice will be at the center of international attention by hosting the United Nations Ocean Conference (UNOC 2025). This major global event will bring together leaders and governments to discuss critical issues related to the sustainable management of oceans and marine resources. Hosting this conference in Nice not only underscores the region’s importance in global environmental discussions but also its active role in promoting maritime sustainability.
Blue Economy & Sea Economy – Nice Côte d’Azur
- Nice at the Heart of Ocean Preservation with the Preparation of the “One Ocean Science Congress”
- Index French Blue Tech: The Excellence of Maritime Startups from the Cote d’Azur
- Blue Economy and Maritime Economy: Team Nice Côte d’Azur to Represent Métropole Nice Côte d’Azur at Three Professional Events
- Blue Economy: SeaZen Develops Sustainable Sailing from the Nice Côte d’Azur Metropolis