The Core Center
The Core Center, located in the Paris region, designs and develops products and technologies that address energy transition priorities and respond to new usage patterns. As the world’s leading private R&D center, its missions are to provide technical support and high-level expertise to Colas’ subsidiaries, develop products and processes, and integrate mobility solutions into infrastructure projects.
In conjunction with the Group’s regional laboratories located in all the geographic regions where Colas operates, the Core Center takes responsible mobility products, techniques and infrastructure solutions from concept through to delivery via development and testing.
The Core Center also serves as a hub for all Colas know-how and coordinates the technical network. The role of the Core Center, which employs about a thousand people, is to deliver rapid solutions to issues faced by operating entities in the field on a day-to-day basis.
Fostering collaborative innovation
The Colas Group has implemented an open innovation approach with the aim of developing collaborative innovation projects with key players in its main ecosystems (including industrial partners, SMEs and innovative start-ups). This approach takes place on two levels: joint development of innovative solutions and on-site testing; and investments to strengthen partnerships through the Group’s CIB Développement investment fund, which acquires minority stakes in innovative start-ups that are in synergy with Colas’ businesses.
Colas also develops numerous partnerships in France and around the world to expand its knowledge and expertise, as well as to help future-proof its business activities:
- Academic partnerships to collaborate on scientific and R&D projects (with schools, universities, public organizations, industrial groups, etc.)
- Partnerships with start-up incubators such as Via ID (innovative mobility solutions)
- Partnerships with start-ups on innovation projects: RB3D (exoskeletons), Dawex (data exchange platform), WiseBIM (Grid2BIM solution), Apilab and BeeOdiversity (bee conservation)
- Partnerships with other large corporations in various industry sectors: Michelin (recycling and next-generation road use), Volvo (safety features for construction machinery)
- Partnerships with innovation and competitiveness clusters within the construction industry: Construct Lab, Cap Digital, Lyon Eurêka Confluence, Transpolis
Colas has launched CIB Développement, an investment fund that backs start-ups specializing in urban mobility.
Its aim is help these fledgling businesses quickly take flight and capitalize on their agility to jointly offer new solutions.
More than just a simple minority stakeholding, CIB Développement represents an opportunity to participate directly in the start-ups, speed up their development and consolidate their business.
Better Driving Community
Accelerating the development of smarter – and therefore safer – mobility
The Better Driving Community is a Michelin Group initiative that seeks to achieve safer road mobility by harnessing driving data. Participating drivers equip their cars with a smart device that collects high-precision data. Michelin’s subsidiary Driving Data to Intelligence uses continuous analysis of driving behavior to calculate a driving score, which can be viewed in an app that assesses three key components of safe driving: speed, anticipation and adaptability. Each user receives personalized guidance to make them more aware of risky behaviors and how to improve, helping them become safer drivers and improving safety for everyone around them.
Through this partnership, Colas aims to:
- Raise employee awareness: By conducting an in-house communication campaign to get as many employees as possible to join the Better Driving Community initiative and rally around the issue of road safety, especially while commuting.
- Raise public awareness: By promoting the Better Driving Community as an innovation that is available to everyone to encourage responsible driving and get drivers more engaged in road safety.
- Create an ecosystem of mobility experts: Pooling expertise will help us gain deeper insight into drivers’ habits and behaviors, in order to develop new data-driven services.
The Better Driving Community initiative is based on a shared belief that this new ecosystem will accelerate the development of smarter – and therefore safer – mobility.