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The Startup Launchpad 2023 in London

Every year, the HEC UK Office organises a Learning Expedition in London for over 100 entrepreneur students from the HEC Startup Launchpad. This program, now run by the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Center, works like an accelerator, designed to help student entrepreneurs launch their start-up within 10 weeks.

HEC UK - Startup Launchpad

(© HEC Paris/Hadrien Rose)

Delphine Mourot (H.03), Director of HEC in the UK: “We are thrilled to host the HEC Launchpad, surrounded by so many talented and innovative entrepreneurs. Their pitches have been truly impressive, and it has been an honour to witness the passion and drive behind their ideas. We are looking forward to welcoming the entrepreneurial ecosystem at the HEC UK House.

An Amazing Acceleration Trip in London

After a few years online, this year, the trip took place in person between March 13-16th in London, and included Entrepreneurs’ Talks and a Pitch Competition in two rounds with its final “Grand Pitch Night” in a beautiful cinema in Central London - streamed live on Youtube and LinkedIn - an exceptional evening for the students, and for the alumni community who was very proud of the new HEC entrepreneurs generation! 


HEC UK - Startup Launchap March 23


Meeting Inspiring Entrepreneurs and Workshop

On Monday 13th, students started the week with a kick-off by Michael Lavner from Balderton Capital to advise them on investors' expectations when financing a start-up. A fantastic presentation to introduce the London Week – Start-Up Launchpad!

On Tuesday 14th, the students spent the day at Huckletree Shoreditch to meet three successful entrepreneurs who shared their entrepreneur's journey with our students. From their first steps as an entrepreneur, to their main challenges and the lessons they have learnt, our students heard the fascinating stories of:

  • Pierre Arsène – Founder and CEO of Mursla
  • Gabriela Hersham – Founder and CEO of Huckletree
  • Carmen Alfonso Rico – Founder of Cocoa

We wrapped up the day with an insightful workshop led by Mark Leruste on how to humanise your pitch with the goal to harness the power of personal storytelling to connect with the audience and win over investors.

These sessions were fantastic, allowing students to ask all their questions to our speakers and connect in an informal setting. 


HEC UK - Startup Launchap March 23


Insightful Entrepreneurs Visits all over London

On Wednesday 15th, the students had the opportunity to split into small groups and to visit start-ups in London at different stages of maturity. Those small settings allowed for a very interactive discussion with entrepreneurs who took the time to share impactful tips and advice to our students.


HEC UK - Startup Launchap March 23


The Grand Pitch Night in London


HEC UK - Startup Launchap March 23


During an exciting afternoon, 28 start-ups pitched in front of 18 judges (VCs/ entrepreneurs/ investors) who had the difficult task of selecting our 6 finalists. A special thanks to all the start-ups who took part in the pre-selections – they did an amazing job at pitching with professionalism and passion their ideas. And thank you to all our alumni and partners who helped with the selection.

The 6 finalist teams then had the opportunity, to have a one-hour mentoring session with 18 expert mentors who helped them to get ready for The Grand Pitch Night. Thank you to all mentors who were so committed to contributing to their team’s success!

Finally, the Grand Pitch Night was the highlight of this fantastic week with 6 start-ups pitching in person and live on Youtube and LinkedIn in front of our Jury Nathalie Gaveau (Technology entrepreneur and investor), Simon Marc (Global Head of Private Equity & Strategic Partnerships at PSP Investments), Emma Davies (Co-CEO at Octopus Ventures) and Alexandre Perrin (Head of Ventures at XTX Ventures).


Nathalie Gaveau

(© HEC Paris/Hadrien Rose)

Nathalie Gaveau (H.99) Tech Entrepreneur & Investor, President of the jury: “Our goal tonight is to get really scalable digital tech companies that make a big impact. It is great to get the Launchpad in London and create bridges for European Tech to scale faster across multiple countries. We get a great diversity of profiles and nationalities. Tonight is a crash course, a proper discussion about how fundable these businesses are and going beyond the surface."


To Know More About the Talented Winning Teams

The Jury Award was awarded to VEETON and the Audience Award was awarded to IDA.

VEETON: Flore Lestrade, Tristan François, Christian Kotait – We offer brands an alternative to photoshoot by generating endless variety of photos instantly at its fraction of its cost. To learn more about VEETON, click here.

IDA: Matteo Beacco, Alex Chataigner and Mathieu Grosso - Ida is revolutionising the supply chain for fresh produce! Our machine learning software helps grocery stores place a profit maximizing, waste minimizing order. To learn more about IDA, click here.


If you missed the event, the replay is still available on YouTube!



Did you know HEC Paris has an office in London? To follow its activities and for more information - Follow HEC in the UK Linkedin Page and Instagram account


Learn more about the HEC UK Representative office