Improving healthcare for all
Logo i-Nov

Healthcare accounts for almost half the winners of the i-Nov wave 9

The 53 winners of wave 9 of the competition were revealed on January 10, 2023, for a total amount of aid of €56.3 million. Among them, 24 healthcare projects, including 14 in digital health.

1 Feb 2023

i-Nov, which was organized for the 7th consecutive year, is a support scheme funded by the State, via its Future Investment Programs (PIA). The 9th wave was financed as part of the France 2030 plan. The competition is designed to select innovation projects with particularly strong potential for the French economy. Almost 600 projects have received awards since 2017.

i-Nov is operated by Bpifrance on behalf of the State, in collaboration with ADEME (Agence de l’environnement et de la maîtrise de l’énergie); it co-finances research, development and innovation projects, the total costs of which amount to between €1 million and €5 million, and which last between 12 and 36 months.

The funding is implemented in the form of State aid, 75% of which is provided as subsidies and 25% as recoverable advances, if the project is successful. For 1 euro of subsidy, the startup must find 1 euro in own funds, via other funding sources, partners and fundraising.

The project must be in line with one of the four themes shown in the specifications – digital/health/transport, mobilities, sustainable cities and buildings/energies, resources and natural environments.

Almost 200 applications have been filed for wave 9, 53 of which were selected, including 24 in the healthcare sector (14 in digital healthcare). Wave 9 made it possible to fund healthcare projects aimed at innovative therapeutic solutions, immunotherapy, connected medical systems or software, surgical robotics, medical imaging, healthcare solutions, AI software for diagnostic help and technologies in the service of disabled individuals. “We select the best projects, whatever their therapeutic purpose,” said Béatrice De Keukeleire, Head of the Healthcare Sector at BpiFrance and overseeing i-Nov.

“The aim of i-Nov is to encourage breakthrough innovations in key areas of the French economy, and support future leaders in their market segment, startups with considerable growth potential. i-Nov is part of a full continuum of funding, from upstream to industrialization, aimed at supporting startups with a strong technological base,” Béatrice De Keukeleire, Head of the Healthcare Sector at BpiFrance.

Depending on how fast they are growing, the project sponsors may be eligible for four different structural aid schemes – i-Lab initially, then i-Nov, followed by i-Démo and finally Première Usine. The same project cannot be funded twice for the same costs.
The Future Investment Programs contain a second so-called “directed” aid package, which is designed to cover the strategic issues and sectors defined by the Government. Three acceleration strategies were drawn up initially in the healthcare sector, in digital health, for biotherapies and bioproduction, and finally infectious and emergent diseases and CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear) risks. As for the medical devices sector it is covered by a Plan.

The selection process
Firstly, the cohesion of the project in relation to the specifications criteria is examined. The company must already have a first proof of concept and present a technological, organizational or service breakthrough innovation, and a true value proposition.
“We expect project sponsors to have an awareness and a genuine vision in respect of their market access strategy, which is very often underestimated,” said Bpifrance’s healthcare expert Béatrice De Keukeleire. “In healthcare, we cannot allow ourselves to fail to anticipate all the steps, in particular regulatory steps, for example the time needed to obtain marketing authorization. The sponsors must also have the human resources needed to fulfill their ambitions, even if they are small or medium-sized businesses.”
Environmental aspects are also becoming an increasingly important part of the selection criteria. “Caring for people does not automatically imply a satisfactory environmental impact,” noted Béatrice De Keukeleire.
Moreover, some applications may be redirected towards other funding mechanisms, if they are not fully suitable for i-Nov.
After this pre-selection, the sponsor defends their project at a hearing, not only in front of a Bpifrance officer but also in front of a minimum of three civil society experts, who specialize in the area in question. “They may have a range of profiles – regulatory, clinical, industrial, technical…,” said Béatrice De Keukeleire. “This network of competences provides a complete vision and an informed opinion on the relevance of the project.”
The dossier is currently completed in two stages, pre- and post-audition. Waves 10 and 11 have already been initiated. The expiry date for filing applications for Wave 11 is set at April 11, 2023.

The 24 healthcare projects recognized by the i-Nov Wave 9:

  • ANCORE TECHNOLOGY – COHESIVES Project (Development of a sealing solution for surgical wounds (cutaneous and internal))
  • CORTEX – SynapCell Project (Solution of Drug Discovery by electroencephalography and AI)
  • DEEPMOHS – DAMAE Medical Project (Pre-surgical definition of the excision margins for lentigo maligna)
  • ERNAD – ZIWIG Project (Salivary diagnosis of endometriosis phenotypes)
  • GECKO+ – Basecamp Vascular Project (Gecko+ Guides and active catheters for endovascular and endoscopic access)
  • GLYCOPHAST – PHOST’IN THERAPEUTICS Project (PhOx430, first-in-Class anticancer – clinical and industrialization)
  • IA VIK – Wefight Project (Predictive application for cancer patients and patients with chronic diseases)
  • IAT – ORTHOPUS Project (Design the new generation of supports for motor disability using artificial intelligence)
  • INTEGRATIOMICS 2 – ADLIN Science Project (Models of Deep Learning applied to multi-omics data or multi-omic analysis using Deep Learning approaches)
  • INTERACTWIN – ExactCure Project (Digital Twin to customize medical treatments)
  • JUDET 4.0 – ABYS MEDICAL Project (Development of a surgical planning platform for the human pelvis)
  • KEEPSIGHT – PHENOCELL Project (Discovery of drugs against dry ARMD)
  • LCTB-21 – Perha Pharmaceuticals Project (Innocuousness of treatment to correct cognitive deficits)
  • LUNA-DTX – HDSI APPLICATION Project (Digital therapy of endometriosis)
  • MBK-103 – Mablink Bioscience Project (Lead the drug MBK-103 (cancers FRα+) in the clinical phase)
  • NEUROMINDINOV – Healthy Mind Project (Digital therapy to be used at home for depression combining virtual reality and neurofeedback)
  • NEXUS – Usense Project (Development of a global data solution for unique early diagnosis)
  • ONCO-BOOST – HEPHAISTOS-Pharma Project (Development of an immunotherapy platform against cancer)
  • PTTM – FeetMe Project (Tools to reduce accidents in the workplace)
  • S2OP2CI – I.Ceram Project (Development of an innovative medical device)
  • SHIVAT – Ubiplug Project (Development of vascular access for hemodialysis)
  • SILVER SPINE – SKAIROS Project (Digital twin of the spine, help in surgical planning)
  • TUMORDROP22 – Okomera Project (Test to select the best anti-cancer treatment)
  • VISIOCYT® 3D – VitaDX International Project (Diagnosis of bladder cancer combining AI/3D)

What are you looking for?