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Benjamin Louis

Benjamin Louis was born in 1986 in Franche-Comté between Sochaux and Besançon where respectively, car and watch industries both rely on surface treatment expertise.

He first obtained a General Physics and Chemistry degree in the Université Sciences et techniques de Besancon in 2006. Then, during a 2 years Professional Master in Chemistry, he was introduced to industry and its requirements through two major internships. A first one of 4 months at an automobile subcontractor, aimed at elaborating by chemical passivation a blue anti-corrosion surface coating for zinc parts. The second one of one year at a watch maker/jeweler subcontractor, aimed at testing the reliability of different set-ups of electrolytic precious metal coatings thickness measurement.

Benefiting from his knowledge in these two micro-coating deposition technologies, chemical passivation and electroplating, he experienced a new coating technology during his thesis, the sol-gel route for making nano-coatings. His thesis was conducted under the direction of Pr. David Grosso at the Laboratoire Chimie de la Matière Condensée de Paris (LCMCP) dependent of the Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC) and hosted in the Collège de France. The CIFRE project grew out of a consortium of five companies in Franche-Comté, specialists in electroplating and vapor deposition techniques, who were willing to cover small complex surfaces with a final imperceptible, abrasion-resistant and omniphobic sol-gel nano-layer. The approach developed by Benjamin has resulted successfully to a protocol to make hybrid coatings from chemical solutions with convincing properties on 3D parts by means of an original deposit device.

Post-doctoral researches with two different industrial collaborators, respectively COLIGRO and AREVA, were then carried out in LCMCP to develop two types of coatings: photocatalytic/hydrophobic one to protect marble and granite, and anti-corrosive/absorbing one for solar concentrators.

In the meantime, Benjamin turned into company creation with a real entrepreneurial desire and participated in the maturation of the SolGelWay project. On a technical point of view, he helped developing an innovative dip coater and co-invented a novel spray-coating concept. On a marketing point of view, he got in contact with several organizations, such as DGRTT, SATT Lutech, C'nano IDF, CFI, OSEO, INSEAD School and the incubator Agoranov, and benefited from their financial support and/or training. Benjamin has also recently expanded his area of competence by opening himself to the world of business through the monitoring of the training program called Challenge + provided by the HEC School.

Having explored the worlds of research, companies and business, Benjamin believed to be able to understand, apprehend and meet the most demanding requirements of potential customers in these different environments.