This past week, LeBridge announced that it will be introducing ten French startups to the London startup scene for two days at the end of may. The startups will be introduced to top London accelerators (Seedcamp and Springboard), coworking spaces (Campus London and Innovation Warehouse), and VCs (Index Ventures and ProFounders Capital).
LeBridge quietly opened applications in the beginning of April, having laid dormant since their creation in early 2011. The organization’s mission is to unite Europe’s startup scene, starting first by increasing interaction between the Paris and London startup scene. Their Startup Caravan seems to be the fruits of their labor to have intimate connections both in London and in Paris.
The French startups touch on a variety of sectors – social, collaborative consumption, mobile, e-commerce – all sectors in which France is strong. Looking through the list of startups attending, I see a few LeCamping companies (Skimm & Infinit), glasses-maker Jimmy Fairly, the image recognition startup Moodstocks,and many more – defintely a good representation of what Paris has to offer, though not at all exhaustive.
Startup Caravan has lined up representatives from both London and Paris for their panelists/jury throughout the two-day event. The event looks to be a great opportunity for startups looking to raise a round of funding to get a quick access to the London VC circle. There is an investor session scheduled during the two-day event, during which investors will share their opinions on investing in Paris. I would be very curious to see what their thoughts are on investing on the other side of the channel.
Startup Caravan looks promising, and while it may be awhile before the next application series opens up, I have a feeling this will become a regulary ‘must’ for startups who have the eyes set beyond the “Hexagon.” You can follow them on twitter, facebook, and Google+ to keep up with their activities.