In the shadow of VivaTech’s tech rockstars, Belgians are getting noticed

Despite a gloomy context, the technology sector was on display this week in Paris. The opportunity for some Belgian nuggets to get noticed.

In a suffocating Paris, the island of artificial freshness offered by VivaTech to the south of the French capital is as appealing as it is welcome. For 4 days, Paris vibrates to a technological rhythm with VivaTechwhich in just a few years has become the benchmark technological event in Europe.

More 100,000 visitors, investors, start-ups and Internet giants rush in search of the innovations and companies that will make the world of tomorrow. Between the huge stands of giants like Google, Meta or Amazonlocal businesses that are promoted out of patriotic interest, and the hundreds of start-ups around the world who fight for the smallest square meter, it is not not easy for Belgian companies to stand out.

However, as soon as you enter the living room, a familiar name jumps out at you. Naki and its terminals including rental batteries are everywhere. In the four corners of the living room, the Belgian start-up which recently raised 3 million euros is unmissable. A nice blow for the young Belgian shoot.

“VivaTech is our biggest success in events. We have deployed about ten stations and we make more than 250 rentals a day. We are here for free. It takes time, but it is a unique opportunity to make ourselves known” , recount Zaccaria Aghemio, the CEO of Naki.

Naki’s CEO, Zaccaria Aghemio, in front of one of his terminals deployed at the VivaTech show.

At home, Naki is already present in the country’s major stations and in Zaventem, but paradoxically cannot convince certain companies such as STIB. This Parisian coup should further accelerate its development. A goal shared by other Belgian start-ups. They came in scattered order, we are used to it now. Wallonia has its delegation of start-ups and its stand, as does Brussels. A few meters apart, they symbolize the fragmentation of the Belgian presence on the spot.

A profitable investment

Some companies have chosen to come at their expense taking a stand on their side. A cost that should be seen as an investment according to Laurent-David Hostyn, CEO of Pricing Pactwho walks the aisles with a paper presentation of his company to stand out from the thousands of screens.

The Brussels start-up offers software for sellers to help them make the best offer in real time to their customers. “It may seem paradoxical, but the primary objective here is not sales, it’s visibility. We have just opened an office in Paris. We want to show that we are present on this market”.



“It may seem paradoxical, but the primary objective here is not sales, it’s visibility. We have just opened an office in Paris. We want to show that we are present on this market.”

Laurent David Hostyn

Pricing Pact CEO

Because if VivaTech is a European event, he is above all very French. On the very chic LVMH stand, the people of Levita from Li├Ęge caused a sensation by levitating the jewels of the luxury group’s brands.

The Walloon start-up Datavillage won the prestigious pitch competition against international competition.

crazy projects

Even at Google, everything is done in French. The American giant is taking advantage of the event to unveil one of its major secret projects: Mineral. It’s one of Elliott Grant’s babies at the head of X, the division responsible for Alphabet, the parent company of Google, very ambitious projects, even a little crazy.

He came in person to present this project which aims to revolutionize agriculture with an army of robot tractors that analyze the soil and optimize its management and yield. The robot was unveiled in the mini-city that Google recreated at the center of the event.

Rockstar CEOs and Mathieu Michel

Right across from Google Town, excitement reigns. There is a crowd movement at the booth of Binance, the largest cryptocurrency platform. Its founder, Changpeng Zhao, makes a surprise appearance there. The sector’s current bad patch does not seem to have affected its popularity. We line up for a photo with him. Some have the company logo tattooed on the body, or sport it via garish dye.

45,000

m2

With 100,000 visitors, 45,000 m2, 2,000 exhibitors, 1,700 start-ups and more than 300 speakers, VivaTechnology has established itself as the benchmark event for technology and innovation in Europe.

He did not tattoo the Belgian flag on his head, but Mathieu Michel wanted to be there. The Secretary of State made the trip to encourage the Belgian troops and take the pulse of European innovation, before gathering all these little people at the Belgian Embassy at the end of the day.

The Princing Pact teams are already making an initial assessment: order forms, valuable contacts and a better understanding of their clients’ needs. The thousands of euros invested in the stand will quickly pay for itself thanks to a preparation with small onions upstream.

Leaving, while ukrainian president makes hologram appearance, we come across yet another crowd. Another tech rockstar? No, a box from the start-up Naki which is full.

The summary

  • With 100,000 visitors, 45,000 m2, 2,000 exhibitors, 1,700 start-ups and more than 300 speakers, VivaTechnology has established itself as the benchmark event for technology and innovation in Europe.
  • Belgium was represented there by two delegations, one from Brussels and one from Wallonia. Other Belgian companies were present on their side to try to give a boost to their visibility.
  • The Belgian start-up Naki has pulled off a great coup by installing its terminals in the four corners of the Parisian salon.

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