A look back at the 4th edition of the CSR Challenge of IÉSEG CONSEIL Lille
On Friday, February 17, the final of the 4th edition of the CSR Challenge organized by IÉSEG CONSEIL Lille, the Junior-Enterprise of IÉSEG, took place. This pitch competition brought together 6 finalists representing the Junior-Enterprises of 6 Grandes Écoles. These start-ups all had in common one thing – they carried out a project with a positive impact in terms of CSR. The event was attended by about 100 people, students and professionals, who all participated in the awarding of the prizes. The jury was made up of representatives from BNP Paribas, EY, MEDEF, IÉSEG, the European Metropolis of Lille (MEL) and the online media Business Cool.
A total of €3,500 in prizes was awarded at the end of the competition. The start-up Réutec, representing IÉSEG, won the Jury’s prize (€2,000). This project aims to replace cardboard packaging with reusable recycled textile packaging. Usave, representing IAE Lille, won the MEL prize and the Public’s Favourite Prize (respectively €1,000 and €500). The objective of this start-up? To become the TooGoodToGo of the non-food industry.
A look back at this 2023 edition of the CSR Challenge with two of the student organizers – Océane TOMIETTO and Laure CARRERE – as well as with Lukas LIÉNARD, founder of Usave and winner of the MEL Prize and the Public Prize.
How did this 4th edition of the competition go and what was the objective this year?
Océane & Laure – CSR is an integral part of the Junior-Enterprise values. We try to make it more and more present in our activities and that’s why the CSR Challenge makes sense. In order to participate in the competition, start-ups must submit a roadmap and a CSR self-diagnosis. The six projects selected by the jury then participate in a pitch competition.
This year, the great novelty was that we opened the CSR Challenge to all the Junior-Enterprises of France, contrary to the previous years where we addressed only the Hauts-de-France region. Beyond the desire to highlight student initiatives with an impact, we also wanted this competition to create a link between the Junior-Enterprises belonging to the movement. On the other hand, this competition allows students to connect with professionals from different sectors, which can potentially open doors for project leaders.
The Challenge also has a pedagogical scope since we offered coaching sessions to each finalist to prepare their pitch. For some of them, it was their first pitch in front of professionals and investors, so it was very formative for them. In business schools like IÉSEG, we learn how to pitch a project, but this is not the case in all schools.
What does this competition bring to the Junior-Enterprise of IÉSEG?
This contest is one of the actions we are taking to make a concrete commitment to CSR. It is not just an image we want to give ourselves. It is also an opportunity to invite our partners and customers to share a convivial moment and to establish links other than by e-mail. The CSR Challenge also contributes to our visibility within the Movement as an active Junior-Enterprise and federator of the other Juniors.
Lukas – You won the MEL Prize and the Public Prize of the CSR Challenge – Can you briefly introduce Usave?
Usave is the TooGoodToGo of non-food produts. We connect stores that have unsold goods with local individuals to promote local sales of unsold products rather than letting them be destroyed, recycled and transported. Indeed, after having seen a documentary on the uncountable quantity of non-food products left unsold each year, I decided to learn more about the subject, notably thanks to a study published in 2021 by the ADEME, in order to propose a solution that meets the environmental challenges and the needs of retailers and consumers.
Why did you apply for the Challenge and what did you get out of it?
I did not know the CSR Challenge of IÉSEG CONSEIL Lille before being contacted by the Junior Entreprise of IAE Lille, which suggested me to participate. I found the idea of gathering start-ups focused on the same subject very interesting, and the idea of representing my school during this competition was stimulating. So, I applied and was selected for the pitch competition. The pitch is a very special moment, which I particularly like because it allows me to share and transmit my passion and emotions. Each funding counts a lot for a start-up! And Usave won €1,500. This Challenge also gives us visibility because the jury is composed of different prestigious actors of the entrepreneurship world. Winning the Public Prize was also a wonderful endorsement of our concept two weeks before our official launch. This event allowed us to make a first introduction to the people in Lille. It was a great springboard!