First EUniWell Start-Up Exchange - Creating a European community of young entrepreneurs

12/06/2022 | by Elodie Bernard | Event Nantes Participation Students

The first EUniWell Start-Up Exchange took place at Nantes Université from 24-25 November 2022. During the event, 11 student entrepreneurs from EUniWell partner universities met to network, pitch their ideas in front of an international crowd, and gather advice from experts and fellow entrepreneurs, including the Sales Director of Doctolib, one of France’s most successful start-ups.

Participating students in front of Nantes Université during the EUniWell Start-Up exchange.
Students working together during the EUniWell Start-Up exchange at Nantes Université.
Students attending the EUniWell Start-Up exchange at Nantes Université.

A network driven by a shared passion: social entrepreneurship

During the first EUniWell Start-Up Exchange, 11 student entrepreneurs gathered in Nantes, France, with the goal to support social entrepreneurship projects. The event provided students with an opportunity to hone their creative problem-solving skills as well as their leadership abilities, and to exchange with other European students driven by the same passion for entrepreneurship. 

“Entrepreneurship can be quite isolating. It was nice to meet students from other countries, and see how similar we are. Beyond borders, we all share a common passion, similar journeys and even personality traits. This event generated a strong sense of community, a group to share our doubts and making sure we are heading in the right direction.” Louise, University of Birmingham.

The Start-Up Exchange was the first event of this kind within the EUniWell Alliance, and the students benefited from the learning initiative, seen as complementary to a classroom experience. 

The EUniWell Entrepreneurship working group also seized the opportunity to regroup and discuss the vision and action plan for the next phase of EUniWell. Students were also involved in a debriefing session to get their perspectives and feedback, and to identify lines of improvement for the next round.

International exposure

The students welcomed the chance to experiment and pitch outside of their countries, and to receive feedback from an international crowd. They could also deepen their knowledge of the French culture and market, which could be a true competitive edge for some start-ups aiming to grow outside of their home market.

To support the young entrepreneurs and help them succeed, the Entrepreneurship working group will explore the idea of a community of students with different backgrounds, skills and nationalities willing to work on specific case studies brought by the student entrepreneurs. On top of delegating some of their research and saving time and energy, the entrepreneurs will benefit from international perspectives which can help them take their start-up to the next level.

Advice from Doctolib, a French “unicorn” start-up

To conclude the event, Thibault Aliadière, Sales Director at Doctolib, gave valuable advice and insights to inspire the young entrepreneurs. Doctolib, an innovative French health start-up founded in 2013, is the leading e-health site in Europe and among the best in the world.

 “My advice for early stage entrepreneurs is to master your go-to-market strategy. No matter how good your idea, how good your technology – you must really know your target and the value you bring them to be successful. Be obsessed by your Unique Selling Proposition.” Thibault Aliadière, Doctolib.

The 11 student entrepreneurs left inspired and recharged, and will be encouraged to stay in touch with their European peers, to foster international cooperation. One of them might lead the next European “unicorn” start-up in the field of well-being!


For more information on EUniWell Start-Up Exchange, please contact euniwell[a]


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