The Prime Minister has decided to award a contribution of approximately half a million euros from the Programme d'investissements d'avenir (P.I.A.) to the company Octopize as part of the 8th wave of the i-Nov innovation competition. Octopize was competing in the Digital Deep Tech theme. Its project concerns the deployment of its disruptive method of anonymising personal data: avatars.
Co-piloted by the Ministry of the Economy, Finance and Industrial and Digital Sovereignty and the Ministry of Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, and operated by Bpifrance and ADEME, this competition rewards start-ups and SMEs with innovation projects that have great potential for the French economy. The government wishes to accelerate the development of innovative companies with a high technological content and at the cutting edge of research. The i-Nov competition favours companies that are leaders in their field and have the potential to become world-class. Octopize, a Nantes-based start-up with the Deeptech label, meets this dual objective of technological innovation and European ambition.
Indeed, Octopize aims to become the European leader in personal data anonymisation, thanks to a unique and patented method: avatars. This disruptive innovation, based on a new Artificial Intelligence technique, allows personal data to be used and shared in full respect of privacy. In 2020, the French Data Protection Authority (CNIL) successfully audited this method and certified the compliance of the solution with the three criteria on anonymisation described in the G29 opinion.
Avatars transform personal data into anonymous and statistically relevant summary data. By maintaining the quality and structure of the original data, the results are easily reproducible. On the other hand, avatars fall outside the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). They are therefore usable, shareable (even outside the European Union) and retainable without time limit. What is the difference with regard to competing solutions? Thanks to its metrics, Octopize quantifies and proves the effectiveness of its avatars both in terms of privacy and data quality. Avatars become multi-use, multi-user data with no expiry date, no longer putting the individuals behind the data at risk.
In the age of big data, avatars are therefore a revolution for the personal data market. Indeed, while the exponential growth in the collection of personal data offers an immeasurable source of value, both for economic players and public services, it is accompanied by serious risks, weighing on the protection of the privacy of the individuals concerned. This is evidenced by the accumulation of cases linked to the hosting or processing of European personal data by American operators: Google Analytics, Meta... Avatars are the solution to exploit and share personal data in an ethical manner.
Moreover, Octopize's clients are not mistaken. Avatars are already being marketed in a sector that collects highly sensitive data: health. Tabular data and time series are anonymised via software or the service. The Data Clinic, for example, attached to the Nantes University Hospital, uses patient data with the agreement of the CNIL thanks to avatars. The same applies to the AP-HP, the CHU of Angers, Inserm, SOS Médecins, the European HAP2 project, the Health Data Hub or with start-ups such as Epidemium, EchOpen or Samdoc, and with pharmaceutical laboratories, as recently illustrated with Roche.
Avatars are thus opening the way to the revaluation of health data. They unleash medical research and facilitate open science. The Octopize start-up is proud to contribute to this vital public health issue, exacerbated by the health crisis.
With the i-Nov funding, Octopize will accelerate R&D to extend the use of avatars to complex data (textual, spatial, etc.) and improve the industrialisation of the method, in order to become the European leader in data anonymisation. The strength of the Octopize method lies in its flexibility, which allows it to adapt to all needs, from internal use to open data, and in its robustness, which opens the way to a wide variety of uses. The next stage of Octopize is already underway and aims to conquer new French and European markets: banking, marketing, insurance, finance, mobility, communities, etc.
Octopize advocates a radical change in the use of data for the benefit of all and respectful of everyone: let's reserve personal data for personal use and use avatars for all other uses. What if tomorrow, avatars became the norm in the European Union?
With Octopize, let's harness the value of data for the benefit of all, while respecting everyone.
Octopize - Mimethik Data is a deeptech startup from Nantes that aims to become the European leader in anonymization. It has developed and patented a unique method for anonymizing personal data, which is certified by the CNIL in June 2020: avatars. The method is marketed in the form of software or a service allowing new uses in an ethical manner. It is already recognised in the health sector and in other verticals. The startup employs about ten people. In September 2021, Octopize raised €1.5 million from several venture capitalists, Bpifrance and Business Angels. Winner of the 2022 i-Nov competition, by decision of the Prime Minister, it is opening up to other economic sectors and confirming its ambition.
For more information: https://octopize-md.com/
Founder: Olivier BREILLACQ - linkedin.com/in/olivier-breillacq
Press contact: email@example.com
Launched in 2017 and co-piloted by the Ministry of Ecological Transition and the Ministry of the Economy, Finance and Recovery, the i-Nov competition already has more than 400 winners. It is part of the "Innovation Contest" continuum, which has three complementary components: i-PhD, i-Lab and i-Nov. The innovation contest marks a commitment by the State through financing, labelling and enhanced communication, making it possible to support the development of highly innovative and technological companies. Upstream, the i-PhD and i-Lab competitions aim to encourage the emergence and creation of Deeptech start-ups, born of advances in French cutting-edge research. Downstream, the i-Nov competition supports innovative development projects carried out by start-ups and SMEs. This competition is financed by the State via the Programme d'investissements d'avenir (P.I.A.) as part of France 2030. It mobilises up to 80 million euros per year around themes such as the digital revolution, the ecological and energy transition, health and security. It is operated by Bpifrance and ADEME. For the winners, it is an opportunity to obtain co-financing for their research, development and innovation project, the total costs of which are between €600 000 and €5 million. The prize is financial support of up to 45% of the project cost in the form of grants and recoverable advances.
For more information: https://www.gouvernement.fr/investissements-d-avenir-lancement-de-la-8eme-vague-du-volet-i-nov-du-concours-d-innovation
The P.I.A. has been running for 10 years and is managed by the Prime Minister's General Secretariat for Investment. It finances innovative projects that contribute to the country's transformation, sustainable growth and the creation of tomorrow's jobs. From the emergence of an idea to the dissemination of a new product or service, the P.I.A. supports the entire life cycle of innovation, between the public and private sectors, alongside economic, academic, regional and European partners. These investments are based on a demanding doctrine, open selective procedures, and principles of co-financing or return on investment for the State. The fourth P.I.A. (P.I.A.4) is endowed with 20 billion euros of commitments over the period 2021-2025, of which 11 billion euros will contribute to supporting innovative projects within the framework of the France Relance plan.
For more information: https://www.gouvernement.fr/le-programme-d-investissements-d-avenir
Bpifrance finances companies at every stage of their development through loans, guarantees and equity. Bpifrance supports them in their innovation and international projects. Bpifrance now also ensures their export activity through a wide range of products. Advice, university, networking and acceleration programmes for start-ups, SMEs and ETIs are also part of the offer to entrepreneurs. Thanks to Bpifrance and its 50 regional offices, entrepreneurs benefit from a close, single and efficient contact to support them and meet their challenges.
For more information: https://www.bpifrance.fr