Stunning shots of the Alps and team members with charming accents—you may have noticed these recurring themes in our footage. That’s because . . . drum roll please . . . HEXO+ originated in France!
Yet things are changing rapidly.
Since interest in our system is not contained by a single continent, HEXO+ is expanding its operations beyond Europe. We’re stoked to announce that we are now planting roots in the United States.
Delivering our first backers with their DIY Kits has also been an opportunity to meet our american followers and ambassadors.
Currently, most of our operations are located in Grenoble, where we first launched the company. Yet our strategy, sales, and marketing teams are now just getting settled in America. As the aerial filming revolution has gained momentum, it has garnered support and interest that transcends borders. And at HEXO+, we’ve always been committed to helping people across the globe join this movement and film their adventures from the sky. For proof, look no further than the fact that you—our backers and supporters—are based in all these countries:
By moving many of our operations to the United States, we’re able to better support our backers and customers and further contribute to the drone industry. After all, America is home to most of our supporters, as well as the majority of the companies involved in aerial filming.
Prior to expanding to the United States, we often traveled to the country to meet with our first backers, customers, partners, and investors. Each trip furthered our desire to be more closely connected to the country’s drone community while also validating the work we were doing in France. Our trip to Las Vegas for CES (the International Consumer Electronics Show), for example, became a major milestone for HEXO+. In addition to receiving incredible support at the show, we were honored to earn three significant awards: the Showstopper Envisioneering Innovation and Design award, Best of CES 2015 by Iphone Life and Best Drone of CES award by Videomaker. Check out our recap of the experience here.
With time, we simply came to the conclusion that America is where we need to be. Our move to the States places us in much closer contact with our supporters, customers, partners, emerging technologies, and the drone industry and ecosystem. San Francisco, here we come!
Our First Steps in the States
We’ve wasted no time since first coming to America. Recently, we were selected to participate in Ubi i/o. We’re honored to be part of this ten-week accelerator, which selects eight French startups that are especially promising and aids them with expanding to the U.S. market. In addition to CES, this has been an essential move in stepping into the American market. Undoubtedly, the program’s mentorship—which provides guidance in strategy, marketing, and positioning—will help us address three core initiatives:
— ubi i/o (@ubi_io) May 14, 2015
Eva, our product owner, testing HEXO+ pitch in front of the huge StartupConference audience. We’ve also kept busy meeting with advisors and attending nearly a dozen of the most prestigious tech events in the Bay Area. We’ve always valued the opportunity to share our product and tell our story at conferences and tradeshows. This has also helped us refine our vision for HEXO+. Pitch after pitch, competition after competition, we’ve come to better understand how we aim to contribute to the aerial filming revolution. Our product and vision have generated tremendous support from others and earned top honors—we’ve been named finalists at IoT and the World Cup Tech Challenge, as well as winners at PitchForce and VC Taskforce. And while we are committed to making the best product possible, we are also committed to furthering the aerial filming movement as a whole. Through these conferences and other dedicated venues, we’ve collaborated with diverse stakeholders, including industry leaders, colleagues, competitors, and tradeshow participants. Together, we’re working to shape the future of aerial filming—as well as the fast evolving legislation that surrounds it.
Great Panel Discussion at Collision Tradeshow, debating around “the future of drones” on the Breakthrough stage.
In a landscape driven by emerging technology and constant change, we’re committed to leveraging synergies between small and mid-sized businesses. The Bay Area is home to some incredible developments in hardware. Our new operations in America are helping us collaborate with companies such as Bolt Motorbikes and Boosted Boards. Rather than simply promoting tech products, these brands are encouraging us to step into a world defined by wonder and shaped by new technology, fresh design, and the simple pursuit of fun.
-Good memories- Having fun with our friends from BoostedBoards during last edition of CES Las Vegas (2015).
HEXO+ In Action
When we first tell people about HEXO+, they often bombard us with questions. Does it really work? How does it follow you? What’s the footage like? There’s no better way to answer these questions than to let people try HEXO+. Since the company’s inception, we’ve firmly believed in the importance of allowing people to not only use HEXO+, but to also assist in its development. Whether hosting a backer at our offices or inviting nearly a hundred people to a BBQ to try out HEXO+, we strive to be as transparent and inclusive as possible with our product development. Our move to the States only solidifies this commitment.
We thrive on new challenges and experiments that help us share HEXO+ and strengthen the system. For example, we recently hosted an event in Menlo Park that showcased both parkour stunts and a demonstration of HEXO+ in action. While we provided an overview of the system, a professional athlete—who had no previous experience using HEXO+—filmed himself with it. Those in attendance were quite impressed by the system’s capabilities. We’re also pursuing more and more opportunities to not only showcase HEXO+, but to also validate and refine the concepts we’re developing and envisioning. Throughout the year, Eva, our product owner, conducts numerous ergonomic tests with users and routinely meets with focus groups.
Strengthening Ties with Our Ambassadors
By moving across the Atlantic, we are also able to work more closely with our strategic partners—especially our ambassadors, the majority of whom live in the States. These world class athletes are focused on discovering the best ways to document their adventures. We’re already in close contact with many of them regarding upcoming projects. We’re spending as much time in the field with them as possible to continue fine-tuning HEXO+ and its app. This ensures that once the system arrives in your mailbox, you’ll be completely satisfied with its ability to capture and share footage from your activities.
Most talented outdoor cinematographer Renan Ozturk has always been a great HEXO+ advisor, here at CES.
Last week, Sam Pilgrim & Yannick Granieri toyed with the HEXO+ for a dirbike session! (footage to be released soon)
We’re confident that having offices in both Europe and the United States will help us evolve and refine HEXO+ even more quickly. As one of the company’s cofounders, I’ll be moving to San Francisco in early September. I’m excited to meet you—our backers and partners—and to join Eva, Haley, and Clement, who are already in the States working to further HEXO+’s presence.
In the meantime, drop us a line at [email protected] Whether you’re curious about our current projects or simply wish to share some insights on our new home in San Francisco, we’d love to hear from you.
I can’t wait to see you in the States.