We discovered them during the Startup Minute when they had one minute to win us over. Now they are preparing themselves for another exercise in style: revealing themselves without giving too much away. Our latest series gets the start-ups to pass a personality test!

This week we meet Emmanuel de Maistre, co-founder and CEO of Redbird, the start-up that the press has nick-named “the French drone champion”.


If your start-up were an animal and a colour, what would it be?

A cardinal … It’s a bright red little bird from America. It’s also the symbol for several American states.

How do you define innovation?

For us innovation consists of perfecting and deploying new and unique solutions, which will radically change the traditional processes in place. Innovation needs to create a break with habits and to allow for the development of new working methods that are more productive and safer.

Which proverb represents the spirit of your start-up?

“Innovate or Die” is written in big red letters on the main wall at Redbird. “Failure is not an option” (Apollo 13) could also represent our attitude.

If your start-up were a historical figure?

Someone who isn’t very well known by the general public, Jean-Claude Brouillet, a real inspiration for us. He was a fighter in the French resistance, a pilot and an entrepreneur. He developed commercial aviation in Western Africa. When he arrived in Gabon just after the war, there wasn’t a single airstrip in the country. He developed several airlines building from nothing. The civil drone sector is similar: everything has to be built, steadily.

Are your teams more tea or coffee?

More “coffee”: the machine never stops working. We are also “sushi” and “gin and tonic”

What is a typical day in your start-up like?

Hard to describe! At the current pace of development, no day is really like the last, and the day is very different for each team: the “sales” team is out with customers, the “pilots” team is in the field, and the “data” team is developing different software solutions, not to mention all the trips abroad and meetings with a variety of partners from industry.

If you had to describe Bouygues Construction in one word what would it be?

In a few words: potentially one of the biggest users of civil drones, in the short term.

You had a go at the exercise of an oral presentation in one minute; now can you have a go at a written presentation in 140 characters?

Redbird brings to the masses the highest performing SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions to process and analyse data from civil drones.

What are your next big events?

We are starting to develop in the USA, following the beginning of a collaboration with Airware in San Francisco. We are also soon going to announce several industrial partnerships and the launch of a new solution to process drone data online, which will be accessible for everybody.

Find out about the next start-up on the blog next week. Until then, if you would like to find out more about Redbird just click here!

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