Lasers to fight against the invaders

Photo: Pedro Ruiz The Duty
Mathieu Hamel and Julien Chosson, which drove everyone an entrepreneurship project, have decided to unite their forces in Lockbird.

Quebec is full of passionate entrepreneurs who are trying to leverage an idea or an innovative concept. Each week, The Duty takes you to meet people with a vision, whose ambitions could transform your daily life. Today, opponents become partners who prey on the unsuspected problem birds, unwanted.

In the business world, it is often every man for himself : there is an idea carrier, is trying to woo investors and it plays from the elbow to distinguish themselves from competing companies. Two entrepreneurs have, however, adopted a completely different approach, which could prove to be very lucrative.


Last summer, Mathieu Hamel and Julien Chosson have all the two participated in the program for the acceleration of the Centre d’entrepreneurship technologique (Centech), but with different companies. The first led Lockbird, a company that specializes in scaring birds, and the second was Bello, a company that uses artificial intelligence to encourage the search for customers.


They have learned to know over the weeks, until the day of the selection of five organizations that are moving to the stage of propulsion. “Jokingly, we said that if our company was not, at the next step, we join the company of the other,” recalls Mathieu.



But when Lockbird became the only one of the two companies to be selected, the joke has become serious. Julien has agreed to team up with Mathieu for his “state of mind” and the value of his product. “We’re in a market that has huge potential, in which there is very little competition,” says-t it.


Vineyard protected


Mathieu had the idea to create Lockbird three years ago, when a friend of his asked him for a helping hand for the harvest period. “I had never visited a vineyard,” he said. I imagined a beautiful landscape with rows of vines, to the infinite and, when I arrived I was really surprised. There were white threads everywhere to cover the vines and protect them from birds. “


When he understands the magnitude of damage these animals can cause, he began to be interested in the systems in place to repel them. In addition to the cannons, propane and pyrotechnics, he discovers the laser systems used in Europe and decides to emulate it.


Since its inception, Lockbird has developed two products : an object having the form of a flashlight which is capable of projecting a laser beam manually, and a turret capable of projecting the laser in continuous in a radius of 100 to 200 meters.


Photo: Pedro Ruiz The Duty

To go further


When the laser beam is projected to the side of a bird, he believes that it is a physical object and it moves away, explain the co-founders, stating that the light beam is safe for animals and humans.


“It already has a strong technology and innovative, but if we want to become number one in the world, it is necessary to go even further,” emphasized Julien.


To do this, the two partners are currently developing a system that can detect and position the birds independently, this would, according to them, the ” first service of startle intelligent in the world “. They want to upset a field that uses the same techniques for decades, offering an effective solution, but affordable.


Many possibilities


The technology developed by Lockbird caters to a customer base much larger and varied than you might think. The use of lasers can be part of the arsenal used to scare birds away unwanted that can be found in airports, golf courses, agricultural fields, culture ponds or landfills.


“When we launched this company, we do not expect to reach so many different markets. Almost every week, we discover a new, ” enthuses Matthew.


And to those who reprocheraient to repel a problem rather than resolve, the two partners respond that the presence of birds side can have disastrous consequences if it is left idle. Just think of the waste from landfills, which are transported by the animals in the forests or the nearby rivers, or even the spectacular water landing that occurred in 2009 in the Hudson river, in New York, when birds flew into the engines of an Airbus A320.


“Follow the birds “


Lockbird has so far signed agreements with two landfill sites and is in discussion with several other potential customers. With the approaching winter, the co-founders will, however, need to ” follow the birds “, aimed soon the market of the United States, central America, and possibly Australia.


The steps follow one another so quickly for the young company, which is no longer that of a single man. “Today, Lockbird, this is my company, as much as that of Mathieu, says Julien. By putting our strengths together, I think we arrived at a place where neither he nor I would ever have us go alone. “

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