The rooster that is La French Tech is poised to start crowing even more across the globe! At the end of January, La French Tech announced a new 3-pronged strategy to encourage investment and innovation from across the globe. The scheme, worth in total around 15€ million, is essentially a public-private partnership open to all people, most notably entrepreneurs, investors, and media representatives, hailing from France or abroad. Their common thread will be the French startups these people are either working for or with.
The strategy consists of three main approaches: a program of French Tech Hubs, an International appeal campaign, and a “Welcome to France” Package to tech companies:
French Tech Hubs
In international innovation regions, La French Tech will establish French Tech Hubs, with this label being given out in a very similar fashion to the French Tech Métropoles already present in France. This part of the strategy aims to amplify expansion of French startups that want to set themselves up abroad, as well as promoting the appeal of France to local business leaders and investors in these new international French Tech Hubs. Some examples of these includes the world’s largest co-working space in Boston, a hub San Francisco and London, as well plans for hubs Tel Aviv, Singapore, and Sao Paolo.
Hubs are responsible for organizing events, creating social and professional networks in identified places, as well as accelerating startups’ set up, fundraising, and coordinating meetings with media and new clients. The international hubs will all work in collaboration with the French Tech Métropoles pre-existing in France.
La French Tech International Promotion Campaign
With a budget of 15€ million, La French Tech is working on an international promotional campaign that will support, in particular, private-sector projects, in addition to highlighting the excellence of French innovation. This campaign will include a greater presence and visibility at international tech events. We have already seen this part of the campaign recently shocking crowds at CES, and pavilions at the Mobile World Congress, and SXSW in Austin.
However, this is not limited to international events. The promotional campaign will also seek to bring investors, influencers, and entrepreneurs from abroad to France to show off to them the diversity of the French ecosystem. Business France is largely in charge of this initiative, and will have a new platform available starting June 1st. This new platform will include communication tools and packages, including multilingual brochures, goodies with the French Tech colors, all key for helping their target audiences discover the French tech ecosystem.
French Tech Welcome Packages
Even further, La French Tech will be inviting young international entrepreneurs to France, through welcome packages that will consist of residence permits, individual grants, and premises to establish startups. Essentially, they are creating one big incubator for foreign startups. In 2015, there will be 130 projects to get this new program off the ground. This is perhaps the most direct portion of their campaign to both diversify and accelerate French Tech, by literally bringing new people and talent to France, rather than letting them stay elsewhere.
French Tech Rooster Flapping Its Wings
I think that this initiative overall is very exciting for France. Looking at what they’ve already accomplished in the first three months of this year with it is quite impressive. French Tech is definitely getting more attention. French Tech shocked everyone with its presence at CES, and we know that Paris is in the lead for the number of foreign investment projects, among global cities like New York and Hong Kong. France has a lot to be excited about. Rude Baguette contributor Mark Bivens recently posted an article about how venture capital investment in French tech was slowing down in comparison to other countries in Europe. I am excited to look back next year at these figures to see how much it will have (assumedly) increased as a result of their new efforts.