Invest in France

Investors’ Month Stockholm 2016

Maxime Krummenacker - 27-oct.-2016 14:53:30

On the occasion of her visit to Sweden, French IT & Innovation Minister Axelle Lemaire was delighted to welcome 50 key Swedish companies at the Résidence de France, in Stockholm, on the 25th of October. Business France and the French Embassy arranged this event to highlight Swedish investors’ achievements and opportunities to successfully establish and expand in France. Axelle Lemaire gave valuable insights into France’s competitive advantages and detailed the most ambitious measures implemented by the French government to boost innovation and give managers greater leeway to adapt their firms to economic conditions. To support the Minister’s points, two prominent business leaders & investors, Carl Bennet (Getinge) and Håkan Agnevall (Volvo Buses), shared their personal experience and stressed concrete examples of how to succeed in doing business in France. The Q&A session and further exchanges also showed the interest Swedish business leaders have in the French market. Swedish investors’ rich experience and expertise in doing business significantly enriched the debate. Business France is then looking forward to meeting Swedish key business players again for our next events! Click here to see the pictures of the event .  


Cleantech Venture Day 2016

Maxime Krummenacker - 06-oct.-2016 17:20:32

Business France is pleased to have participated at the Cleantech Venture Day 2016’s edition as a partner of the event. We were there all day, together with the economic department of the French Embassy in Finland, to promote France’s attractiveness in the cleantech sector to the many experts, investors and start-up companies that attended the event. Find out here why France is an attractive country for start-ups and investors. This was a great 11th edition that took place in the magnificent Sibelius hall by the lake Vesijärvi in Lahti, Finland. About 300 cleantech professionals gathered into this dynamic environment, bringing their cutting edge ideas to make the world a cleaner and smarter place to live in. The program was dense and of high quality: matchmaking speed-dating sessions for start-ups and investors, panels to elect and reward the best projects and brilliant seminars to inform and enlighten our minds on the most important technologies that will change our lives in the next decades. Business France wants to thank the organizers and other partners of the event for the spotless organization. May clean technologies and innovation continue its fast track progress and bring a lot of new opportunities to develop business and knowledge all together . See here the pictures of the event.


Global Competitiveness Report 2016-2017: 4 of the Nordic countries in the top 12 !

Maxime Krummenacker - 03-oct.-2016 09:41:24

Released on the 28th of October 2016, the Global Competitiveness Report 2016-2017 gives an annual performance overview of 138 countries across the world. Nordic countries really stand out since they are all within the top 12 in both overall and innovation-based rankings ! Sweden comes in 6th position and has great assets to perform well in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, with a strong technology readiness, high innovation capacities and an improving macroeconomic environment . On the contrary, France´s competitiveness is mainly driven by its market size and its infrastructure’s quality . The country´s rank remained stable this year (France moved one place up to the 21st rank). However, similarities can also be highlighted between France and the Nordic region since tax rates and restrictive labor regulations are still considered as the most problematic factors that weigh down their competitiveness. Find in the link below the 10 main reasons of why France is a good country to developp business with .


France in focus: ALPC’s large renewable energy sector

Amelie Argenti - 29-janv.-2016 14:08:44

The ALPC region is an already well established and equipped area for companies in the renewable energy sector. The region has developed infrastructures and development projects in several important renewable energy sectors: -  Solar power : In Cestas, close to Bordeaux the ALPC region is host to the largest solar power complex in Europe, the size of over 300 football pitches. It contains 25 plants with a capacity of 300 megawatts. This has resulted in fast expansion of the sector and the cluster,  SYSOLIA rapidly growing and including new innovative groups and companies. -  Wind power : With over 34 wind farms and  376 megawatts produced annually, wind power is another highly developed area with lots of potential in the ALPC region. Hundreds of manufacturing, engineering, maintenance and R&D facilities have been developed in the region to meet the demand and investments pouring into the area. -  Biomass : This is a growing sector with projects using second generation biomass processes to produce energy such as ethanol. ALPC is well equipped in natural resources (wood, maize etc) and is able to accommodate numerous companies in the sector. -  Geosciences : France’s sole cluster in geosciences is located in the ALPC region.  AVENIA assembles numerous companies and large groups seeking to responsibly handle fossil fuels, storage of CO2 and industrial geothermal energy. There are numerous companies that can be highlighted for the purposes of article, three have been selected: VALOREM  was created in 1994 and quickly became a market leader in the green energy sector. With its head office in Bègles, ALCP, the group has extensive projects throughout France, and in parts of Eastern Europe, Africa and the Caribbean, offering services ranging from feasibility studies and assessments through to project development, construction and maintenance. Since its creation, VALOREM has created over 43 windfarms, installed 240 wind turbines and connected 500 megawatts. The company is continuously developing new projects and has a few underway in the nordic countries. FONROCHE ENERGIE   is a global green energy player with its headquarters in Roquefort, ALPC. The group was founded in 2008 and grew quickly to produce revenues of 200 million EUR and employ 190 people. FONROCHE offers clean energy solutions, specializing in solar (photovoltaic and solar thermal systems), biogas, geothermal and off-grid lighting systems. The group handles all levels of the project from sourcing to design, manufacturing, installation and maintenance.  FONROCHE is today present in Europe, Africa and the Caribbean.  HYD&AU is a national leader in the industrial and mobile hydraulics sector in France. The group has also expanded its services and developed numerous partnerships with operators and manufacturers of wind turbines to offer a range of services from supplying spare parts to maintenance and repair.  HYD&AU has 18 sites in Europe and in Africa. With their headquarters located in Vayres in the ALPC region, the group today employs over 300 people and has a global turnover of over 54 million EUR. For further information on the renewable energy sector in the Aquitaine Limousin Poitou Charentes region do not hesitate to contact Amelie Argenti, amelie.argenti(@)businessfrance.fr   //


France in focus: Nordic companies in the ALPC region

Amelie Argenti - 27-janv.-2016 19:53:28

The Aquitaine Limousin Poitou-Charentes region is vast and rich in resources and solutions not only for local French companies, but also for the numerous international groups and organizations that set up in the area.  The region boasts of sub-surface resources from groundwater, limestone, oil & gas, to thermal springs, but also industrial complexes, clusters & centres of excellence, and high-tech facilities able to accommodate a range of organisations. Of note also is that ALPC has devoted an important part of their budget to innovation and R&D projects in the region. Over the years an increasing number of companies from the Nordic countries have bought, invested in or otherwise established themselves in the ALPC region. The sectors covered range from construction to pharmaceutical development, paper production and retail to name a few.        A selection of the Nordic companies and their activities in the ALPC region are included below: Yara International ASA , originally Hydro Norsk, was created in 1905 in Norway. The group specializes in agricultural products and environmental protection agents and is the leading provider of sustainable crop nutrition solutions. Yara has an annual turnover of around 15 billion USD and over 12 000 employees globally. The group has several facilities in France including the site in Pardies in the ALPC region, created in 1986 with the acquisition of AZOLACQ. The totally integrated plant is part of a large industrial complex and as Yara themselves illustrate the location is near the Spanish border and well served by daily flights, a speedways network, and connected to the national railway grid.   The Danish company Ambu is specialized in diagnostic and life-supporting procedures ranging from anesthesia to patient monitoring and emergency care devices. The company was created in 1937 and is today fully operational on a global scale, with exports accounting for over 98% of their sales. Ambu has an annual turnover of around 300 million USD and over 2200 employees globally, of which 29 are based in France. As part of the group’s strategy, activities on several markets were concentrated on one sole location per country. The French subsidiary Ambu SARL has been based in beautiful Bordeaux since 1988.     Stora Enso is a Finnish company with expertise in the biomaterials, paper, packaging industry, and wood products sectors. The group has a massive production capacity with 7,1 million tonnes of paper, million tonnes of board, 1.3 billion square metres of corrugated packaging and 5.6 million cubic metres of sawn wood . Stora Enso has over 26 000 employees in more than 35 countries and presented a result in 2014 of 11.4 billion USD in revenue. Stora Enso Bois in France has set up in two distribution centres, one of which is Rochefort in ALPC. Emphasis has been placed on product development, IT- and e-business development. Capio Group is a Swedish healthcare provider founded in 1994 operating in Sweden, Norway, Germany and France. The group offers a range of healthcare solutions through its hospitals, primary care facilities and specialist clinics. In 2014 Capio’s more than 12 000 employees treated 4, 6 million patients across the four countries. The French branch of the group represented the second-largest segment by net sales and number of patients visits in 2014 and employs over 5000 people in the country. Capio France was created in 2002 and has since established eight emergency hospitals, twelve local hospitals and three specialist clinics primarily for rehabilitation and psychiatry. The most recent opening in 2015 of the Belharra clinic in Bayonne will be able to accommodate around 50 000 patients a year and represents an investment of 80 million EUR by Capio in the region. For further information on the Aquitaine Limousin Poitou-Charentes region or Nordic companies and investments there, please contact Amelie Argenti, Amelie.argenti(@)businessfrance.fr


France in focus: the high-flying aerospace industry in ALPC

Amelie Argenti - 27-janv.-2016 19:44:16

Few regions in the world can truly boast of such a dynamic aerospace sector as Aquitaine-Limousin-Poitou-Charentes (ALPC). The region has a long history in the aerospace industry which has resulted in it positioning itself as a global leader and reference point in several subsectors of the field. Key figures of this sector in ALPC include: - 700 active companies - 40 000 jobs in the sector - 4 billion EUR in revenue Areas in which the region is a world leader include: turbines for helicopters, top of the range corporate jets, landing and braking systems, launch vehicles and propulsion and deterrent weapon systems to name a few. As a result of this know-how two important clusters have been created in the region. The first, Aerospace Valley  was created in 2005 through the close collaboration between the Aquitaine and the Midi-Pyrenees regions, and represents roughly one third of Frances aerospace workforce. The cluster has received funding for 450 R&D projects, representing 1.1 billion Euros. The second cluster AEROTEAM  situated in the Poitou-Charentes area was created in 2008 and has diligently promoted the partnerships, R&D and collaborations in the area. With over 150 companies in Poitou-Charentes, including large groups such as Thales, Zodiac Aerospace and Dassault Aviation, the merger with the Aquitaine region has created one of the largest gatherings of companies in the aeronautics industry. With such a large and specialized aerospace sector, it was a little tough to select just 3 companies to profile in this article. Nevertheless a selection was made, so we begin with the giant: Airbus. Airbus Defense and Space , part of the Airbus employs over 14 000 people and has a revenue of 14 billion EUR globally. The group has wide ranging expertise developing technology and programs for everything from defense and security to telecommunications and manned space missions. The site in Aquitaine was built in the 1960s and is made up of 70 000 m² of offices and workshops. It specializes in subassemblies, high-performance filament-wound and woven structures, thermal protection, atmospheric re-entry systems and complex testing. Dassault Aviation  has 4 sites in the ALPC region and over 2900 employees, almost a quarter of the groups global workforce of 11 700. The group produces falcon jets and military aircrafts and created the famous Mirage jets series. There is currently a partnership with northern Europe for the Dassault group in the form of the established collaboration with Swedish Saab AB as well as EADS in the creation of the nEUROn, an unmanned combat aerial vehicle. Zodiac aerospace founded in 1896, has been active in the sector for over 100 years with its earliest designs focusing on hot-air balloons and airplanes. Today the group’s activities are focused in three core segments: comfort and life on board aircraft, onboard systems, and safety on the ground and in-flight. With over 100 sites and a global workforce of over 30,000 people, the group retains an important presence in France and has five sites in the ALPC region alone. For further information on the aerospace industry in the Aquitaine Limousin Poitou-Charentes area, or to come into contact with the region to explore collaboration opportunities please contacte Amelie Argenti, amelie.argenti@businessfrance.fr Picture courtesy of Invest in Aquitaine //


France in focus: ALPC textile design

Amelie Argenti - 21-janv.-2016 14:28:40

With the flurry of decoration, lifestyle and design fairs currently being held, Formex, and on the horizon, Formland & Oslo Design Fair, in the Nordic countries, and in conjunction with Maison & Objet in Paris, we will take a closer look at some of the decoration and design companies form the Aquitaine-Limousin-Poitou-Charentes (ALPC) region. There are of course numerous businesses in the region with wonderful products and a claim in the sector, but we will take a closer look at three companies located in the Basque country and specialized in textiles. The Basque country has a long history of weaving and textile production – historically it was an agricultural practice: in order protect the cattle from the sun during plowing and harvest seasons, a woven cover, called Saïal, was placed on the animals. Each Saïal had seven stripes woven into them representing the seven Basque Provinces. The practice evolved and the region now has a rich history in the production of linens ranging from table cloth to tea towels and numerous textiles in between.                                                                                             Images courtesy of Tissage Moutet The family business, Tissage Moutet , has been using tradition Basque weaving techniques since 1919. The company, located in Orthez, is a certified “Living Heritage Company” and has maintained traditional practices while modernizing their design and production, and prides itself on its innovation through style approach in the creation of their linen. With collections ranging from table and kitchen linens, homeware & decoration, and hospitality & restauration the group has a wide range of products to satisfy their growing national and international clients. Moutet exports to several countries around the world including Denmark and Finland!                                                                                Images courtesy of Creations Jean Vier Another Basque company in the textiles sector is Creations Jean Vier , a company with a 30 year history in the industry. A wide variety of table linen, bathroom linen and home furnishings are included in their productions, naming all their collections after Basque villages and towns (St Jean de Luz, Espelette, Biarritz, Sara, Arnaga, Abadia, Bilbao, etc.) or traditional Basque pastimes and traditions, Txilin Txalan (a children’s game), Aria le fil or Saïal. The company has also launched a bags and accessories line called  BIARRITZ1930  with an art deco feel inspired from the "jewel of the Basque coast", Biarritz. Creations Jean Vier is also present on numerous international markets, and hopefully soon in the nordic countries!                                                                                                   Images courtesy of ARTIGA The last company we will look at in this article is ARTIGA ,  located in the town of Magescq. This company was created in 1999 and has since then gone from strength to strength, from opening their first store in 2001 to delivering an order of 5500 “sailor bags” for the G20 summit in 2011. Today, ARTIGA has 8 stores in France and is expanding internationally. With collections of bath towels, table linens, pillows and accessories, this company has no shortage of bright colourful Basque inspired products.  For more information on any of the companies featured, do not hesitate to contact Amelie Argenti, amelie.argenti(@)businessfrance.fr //


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