Revival Bionics, the prosthetics start-up of the future

Guil­laume Ban­iel, 33, is the founder and CEO of Revival Bion­ics, a com­pa­ny that designs and man­u­fac­tures an active walk­ing assis­tance device, specif­i­cal­ly a robot­ic human foot, for amputees. The aim of this device is to improve mobil­i­ty and com­fort for patients, so that every step becomes easy again.

Revival Bion­ics derived from the per­son­al sto­ry of Guil­laume Ban­iel, who, after com­plet­ing a DUT in Mechan­i­cal and Pro­duc­tion Engi­neer­ing at the IUT in Amiens, went on to study Mechan­i­cal Sys­tems Engi­neer­ing at UTC. 

In 2014, he began his career at Thales as an electro­mechan­i­cal engi­neer. He was an electro­mechan­i­cal prod­uct engi­neer and was in charge of the on-board gen­er­a­tors installed on board the Mirage 2000. «In 2018, paral­ysed, I found myself wear­ing an ortho­sis on a dai­ly basis. I was sur­prised by the non-propul­sive nature of my ortho­sis, a car­bon sec­ond skin that does not ful­ly com­pen­sate for my dis­abil­i­ty. This expe­ri­ence prompt­ed me to under­take in-depth research into pros­the­ses and active orthoses,» con­fides Guil­laume Ban­iel. After a year’s re-edu­ca­tion and a great deal of research, he came up with his first con­cept for a bion­ic foot. Encour­aged by the INPI (France’s nation­al intel­lec­tu­al prop­er­ty agency), he joined the BioStart pro­gramme in mid-2020 at the Euras­an­té incu­ba­tor in Lille. 

He then decid­ed to put his dual skills in project man­age­ment and tech­ni­cal engi­neer­ing to good use. From there, in 2021, he found­ed his own start-up: Revival Bion­ics, whose main objec­tive is to devel­op tech­no­log­i­cal solu­tions that ful­ly com­pen­sate for dis­abil­i­ty. «I then asked Nathan Girard, who was just as pas­sion­ate as I was and an engi­neer who had recent­ly grad­u­at­ed from UTC, to join me in this adven­ture. A year lat­er, Revival Bion­ics has a bion­ic foot demon­stra­tor and is now one of the few com­pa­nies in the world to have done so”.

DNA with both technological and human aspects

In 2022, Revival Bion­ics dis­tin­guished itself by win­ning the first Grand Prix I‑Lab, a nation­al busi­ness start-up com­pe­ti­tion. «This prize con­firms our start-up’s remark­able con­tri­bu­tion to inno­va­tion in bio­me­chan­ics and our com­mit­ment to dis­abil­i­ty com­pen­sa­tion. As far as I’m con­cerned, I’ve got a taste for under­stand­ing the very fine details involved in set­ting up a tech com­pa­ny that is halfway between a tech­no­log­i­cal feat and a human exploit. I can’t wait to test my hypothe­ses with a big­ger team,» says Guil­laume Baniel.

The future looks bright for the com­pa­ny, with a num­ber of strate­gic projects in the pipeline. «We are active­ly work­ing on the devel­op­ment of the sec­ond ver­sion of our device and, more broad­ly, on key mecha­tron­ic build­ing blocks, a cru­cial stage if we are to be able to offer patients a robot­ic foot and tech­nolo­gies that ful­ly com­pen­sate for their dis­abil­i­ty. Indeed, the company’s voca­tion is to bridge the gap between pas­sive devices such as orthoses and con­ven­tion­al pros­the­ses, which fail to restore a gait equiv­a­lent to that of an able-bod­ied per­son. So Revival Bion­ics’ DNA is based on tech­no­log­i­cal inno­va­tion, improv­ing the qual­i­ty of life of dis­abled peo­ple, and a com­mit­ment to research and devel­op­ment in the field of biomechatronics.

Le magazine

Avril 2024 - N°62

Faire face aux enjeux environnementaux

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