Lumicène raises 6 million euros to accelerate the development of its single-cell habitat – Le Journal des Entreprises
The Lyon industrial carpentry company Lumicène (15 employees; turnover not disclosed) raised 6 million euros from the Enthéos family office and banking partners (Bpifrance, BNP Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, CIC Auvergne Rhône-Alpes) , in order to develop a top-of-the-range single-cell habitat intended to be installed in the heart of nature. Its off-site circular construction caters to the upscale hospitality market.
“Enthéos has knowledge of modular construction and brings a real sensitivity to industrial issues. Its long-term approach and its understanding of brand issues convinced us that they were the right partners”, comments Clément Salvaire, president of Lumicene. The Salvaire family remains the majority shareholder.
From the second half of 2023, the company will move into a new production site that it will rent north of Lyon. Twenty employees should be recruited by the end of 2024.
Strong international demand
In the meantime, the single-cell habitat, called LumiPod, is manufactured in its workshop in Meyzieu, in the Lyon region. Since 2019, 50 LumiPods have been installed in private homes and hoteliers, in France and Austria in particular. The company plans to manufacture as many in 2023, in particular thanks to requests from prospects, 75% of which come from abroad (countries in northern Europe and the United States).
Led by brothers Clément and Charles Salvaire, Lumicène was originally a single-product joinery founded in 2003 in Laval (Mayenne) by their father, Laurent Salvaire, inventor of a patented window manufactured by Saint-Gobain in Chambery (Savoie). This huge sliding “bioclimatic” bow window offers 180-degree vision, captures solar gain in winter and disappears completely into the structure in summer, limiting the impact of heat on the home. The technical and aesthetic prowess struggling to find its market, initial thoughts on a modular construction project have emerged.
Create your own market
In 2019, after eighteen months of work, the first 3D simulations of LumiPod – a bedroom and a bathroom in 18 m² – are presented. In a few months, the project generated more than 4,000 requests. The company opens its workshop in Meyzieu (Rhône), a workshop with an area of 1,000 m² where it assembles its modular wooden constructions, offered in four versions, from the 5 m² sauna to the 42 m² suite (for a price of 200,000 euros excluding tax). Manufacturing remains outsourced to Saint-Gobain in Savoie. “We are designers and assemblers and want to remain so, because it is on this condition that we can ensure a perfect quality of finish, like a furniture manufacturer”, specifies Clément Salvaire. The company favors the use of biosourced materials (PEFC wood, recycled tiles, wooden foundations, etc.).