Smart card, contactless payment, online payment: Normandy has revolutionised everyday life in France with its technology. The region is exploring new digital uses and markets fuelled by its first class laboratories, innovative business groups and its own digital policy. It stands out in data, AI and cybersecurity.

A breeding ground for digital companies and concepts

Digital is a driving force in Normandy! Companies of all sizes have the fuel they need to switch into top gear here. They have access to outstanding laboratories and facilities including Caen University’s CIREVE (Interdisciplinary Virtual Reality Centre) and the CRIANN (Regional Normandy IT and Digital Application Centre)

The centres and clusters foster talent too, encouraging competition and collaboration. They include the TES digital business cluster (150 members, a hundred projects supported every year), NWX business collective and Normandigital network of digital professionals working in Normandy. The French Tech Normandie helps promote local digital businesses. 

Data destination

Markus Spiske – Unsplash
Datalab Normandie

Datalab Normandie

The region has made a commitment to the industry too. It founded the Datalab Normandie in 2020. The resource centre unites thirty public and private partners to promote data available in Normandy. This involves developing new health products and services, mobility, education, environment and more.

Le Havre: Smart Port City

Le Havre: Smart Port City is one of 24 projects selected for the national “Territoires d’innovation” initiative. It brings together 83 public and private partners to help the region to transition in several areas, including data. There are several projects in the pipeline: a Smart Data Services platform, Big Data Smart Port, cybersecurity platform and simulator, Marins Research. 

Séverine Frères – Normandie Tourisme
Le Havre

Small businesses, big ideas

  • 1 business cluster
    Pôle TES, the digital business cluster in Normandy
  • 1 industry association

    NWX – Normandie Web Xperts, Normandy’s digital industry association

  • 1 label
    French Tech Normandie
  • 4000 companies
    including 90% with under 5 employees
  • 20,600 jobs

Key areas in the digital industry

Jefferson Santos- Unsplash

Cybersecurity

Phishing, hacking, ransomware: cybersecurity has become a major issue for companies and communities. Some of Normandy’s biggest gems include Avant de cliquer, 6cure, Torii Security and Manika. Regional cybersecurity businesses are members of CLUSIR Normandie (Normandy Information Security Club). We should mention that the region also has a local cyber incident response centre called Normandie Cyber for SMEs, MSBs and authorities.

Health Tech

Healthcare is an industry of excellence in Normandy. It has joined forces with local digital talents to create respected businesses (part of the Normandie Health Tech network) such as Robocath, Bodycap and Genexpath. The projects are supported by Pôle TES or Normandie Incubation and often result in exciting SMEs including Oky Doky (optimising emergency calls) and Arterya (the brains behind a smart bracelet to make it easier to test blood). 

Julien Hélie
Simon ABRAHAM
PHOTO-CBC-Caen Basket

Sports Tech

Normandy is one of the most exciting sports tech regions. The 2024 Olympics have empowered the industry around Pôle TES, Normandie Incubation, Centre Sportif de Normandie in Houlgate and Palais des Sports in Caen. Sports facilities and digital groups have joined forces and already come up with innovative products. Would you like to hear about one of them? Data Dunk has designed a tool to measure, analyse and manage indoor sports performance in real-time.

E-tourism

Interactive tour of the Scriptorial in Avranches, augmented reality at Château de Falaise, Sées digital religious art museum experience: as a leading tourist destination, it makes sense for Normandy to explore E-tourism. Pôle TES supports projects in this area: Cadomus, M-STADIUM, RA2l etc. Some Normandy start-ups are starting to attract a lot of attention. Feelobject makes tactile and vocal objects for people with sight impairment and has supplied the likes of Disneyland Paris.

Stéphane Maurice – Normandie Tourisme
Chateau_de_Falaise-Stephane_Maurice-Normandie Tourisme
Iars Kienle – Unsplash

Data

Data is a serious business in Normandy! The region’s commitment to the sector is clear to see with its data lab, local data centres and major projects such as Le Havre Ville Portuaire Intelligente. Leading SMEs such as Saagie (DataOps platform), SINAY (big data applications for the maritime industry and environment), Devolis (innovative AI and Big Data solutions) and MomentTech (Deep Learning) trust the sector.

Digital responsibility

The industry has a future with specialist companies including Webaxys (data centres powered by the Normandy sunshine!), Ftel (the first Norman business to earn the “Entreprise du Numérique Responsable” label) and Mon site vert (website hosting). Normandy is also big on refurbishing with leaders such as YesYes , AfB in Caen and the Reboot Écosystème project in Rouen. The Morphosis group near Fécamp has paved the way in recycling electronics and has one of the only factories in the world producing precious metals to industry standards (Weeecycling).

Yes Yes
Yes Yes, entreprise du reconditionné à Caen en Normandie
Julien Hélie
Eldim

Semiconductors and electronics

No semiconductors, no digital! NXP, Murata, Presto Engineering, Effinov Technologies and Selha Group: playing host to semiconductor manufacturers and electronics experts is a major asset for the digital industry in Normandy.

logo-invest-in-normandy

Do you need assistance?

The economic development agency of the region, AD Normandie, offers personalised support for setting up your business in Normandy. A team of experts assists you with the administrative procedures for the development of your project as well as investments.

 

Discover the support for the digital industry by AD Normandie

Top 3 digital innovations from Normandy

Luc_Pallavidino-Yousign

01

E-signatures for SMEs and VSBs

The Caen-based SME Yousign came up with a simple, secure and legal tool in 2013: e-signatures for businesses. Fast forward 10 years and it’s now the European e-signature leader with over 15,000 clients in France and 140 employees. 

YesWeHack, start-up normande dans la cybersécurité
YesWeHack

02

The first bug bounty platform in Europe

The Rouen start-up YesWeHack designed this bug bounty platform, the first of its kind in Europe. Basically, it provides businesses with access to an ethical hacking community (30,000 experts in 170 countries!) to identity vulnerability issues in their programmes, apps or connected objects. YesWeHack’s key accounts include La Caisse d’Epargne Normandie, Orange and Blablacar. 

YesWeHack

Patisserie-numerique en Normandie
Pâtisserie numérique

03

Patiss3

This 3D food printer that you can operate from your smartphone is a mini revolution in the world of baking. The team of bakers, engineers, software developers and designers at La Pâtisserie Numérique came up with it at their La Pépinière (HUB 4.0) HO in Louviers. It enables chefs to create structures that would be impossible to achieve by hand and simplifies processes for bakers so they can replicate the recipes for doughs and biscuits in-house.

La technologie Patiss3

SmartGreenRoad_Francis APESTEGUY-Normandie Attractivite
Francis APESTEGUY

The digital industry in Normandy is eco-friendly

On the one hand, the digital industry is behind a rise in the use of raw materials and energy, meaning more greenhouse gas emissions (7% of CO2 emissions in France in 2040, which is more than air travel). On the other hand, it provides a golden opportunity for regions to reduce their carbon footprint (smart grids, AI to alleviate road traffic etc.). Normandy businesses are well aware of the situation and have taken a stand. Pôle TES has made digital responsibility part of its project support system. The NWX cluster has published a special guide and provides specific services and training to its members in partnership with the INR.

Digital employment: favourable circumstances

Systems engineer, web developer, systems and networks technician, data scientist: the industry is thriving and companies are hiring. The region has 7000 vacancies a year in digital and communication positions (Pôle Emploi figures from 2019). 

Fortunately, businesses have good training centres and specific sites throughout the area to settle in and recruit staff: Seine Innopolis in Rouen, Plug’n Work in Caen, La Pépinière (HUB 4.0) in Louviers, Cité Numérique in Le Havre and Smart’Up at Airbase 105 in Evreux.

Companies in the industry

Studio 911
Entreprise Laudescher en Normandie

The region has always been home to major companies involved in microelectronics (semiconductors), electronic banking and contactless payment. Some of the biggest names include NXP Semiconductors, Orange, Murata, Ellit, Acome and Tagmaster (Balogh). 

The region also plays host to big names in digital such as the Qwant search engine (Rouen) and Soget. The Le Havre company specialises in port community systems and is one of the world’s leaders in maritime single windows. 

That said, 90% of digital businesses in Normandy have less than 5 employees. They are all over the region and cover every area of the digital industry. 

Courses that meet requirements

On top of more “traditional” studies (maths, IT), Normandy has colleges and courses specialising in digital technology in line with the needs and specialities of the local industry.

Higher education courses

Normandy universities (Caen, Rouen, Le Havre) and engineering schools teach over a hundred courses on digital subjects. There are degrees and Master’s in IT, multimedia, internet, networks, telecommunication, bioinformatics, software, data, cybersecurity to name but a few. Université de Caen Normandie is launched a new cybersecurity Master’s degree in 2024. 

Several of these courses focus on AI, such as the Science and Data Engineering Master’s at Université du Havre and Artificial Intelligence for Marketing Srategy Master’s at EMN. Others focus on data, like the Data Science Consultant Master’s at Insa Rouen. 

Studio 911
Etudiants à Rouen

Other specialist training centres and fields

News in the digital industry in Normandy

Showcasing IT talent in Normandy: get ready for WorldSkills 2024 with Thomas and Zakina

After winning gold at the national competition, 21 year old Thomas will showcase his skills on the international stage at WorldSkills with the French team in September 2024. What does he do? He designs business software solutions. He is learning his trade from Zakina, his application development HND teacher Lycée Jean Rostand in Caen, who…

Virtual Reality (VR) at the service of research

Was this content helpful?