When you think of Paris, what’s the first thing that comes to mind, warm croissants, elegant fashion and bustling tourist attractions? You probably didn’t picture innovative start-ups, impressive founders and a thriving tech scene. However, that’s the reality of life in Paris in 2021.
Historically, it has been difficult to do business in the French capital. But the situation has changed drastically over the last few years thanks to an influx of specialists, venture capital investments and a strong start-up ecosystem.
As the old saying goes: “Paris is not a city, it’s a whole world”, and the tech scene is now a huge part of this metropolis. Here’s everything you need to know about working (and succeeding) in this sector.
Banking and insurance are the largest sectors of employment in Paris, therefore the city’s fintech sector is very appealing for tech workers from around the globe. According to Dealroom, French Fintechs have raised a total of €1.9 billion so far in 2021, putting them behind only the UK and Germany. That’s more than double the amount France attracted in 2020!
This explosive growth is due to the fact that France is one of the top recipients of venture capital in Fintech. Why you might ask? Well, the French government has implemented a series of programmes to promote startups and SMEs. They’ve even introduced financial incentives with a tax credit for research (CIR) and employment (CICE).
One Fintech company that you should keep an eye out for is Shift Technology. This AI-based fraud detection solution is used by more than 70 insurers globally. The company has offices around the world, but its headquarters are based in Paris.
Paris also has a vibrant Biotech sector. According to a survey conducted by France Biotech, the French healthcare sector is comprised of over 1,800 companies. This includes 720 Biotech companies, 73 bio-cleantech companies, 886 medical devices and diagnostics companies, and 200 companies focusing on eHealth.
Another company worth watching is Cellectis. Cellectis is developing next-generation versions of CAR T-cell therapy, a form of cell therapy for cancer that has shown impressive remission rates in patients with severe forms of blood cancer.
Food is a huge part of Paris’ culture and economy. In fact, the food industry alone employs 10% of the region’s total workforce according to the Paris Region’s website. As a result, the city’s Foodtech scene is also growing at a staggering rate as 80% of national food tech investments are made in and around the capital.
One exciting company that is growing rapidly is Algama, a food tech company that harvests the potential of algae to create food that is good for both the planet and people.
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San Francisco has Silicon Valley, London has Shoreditch, and now Paris has Silicon IX. You can find a lot of Paris’ most exciting tech companies in the 9th Arrondisement.
South Pigalle or ‘SoPi’ quickly became a firm favourite amongst tech founders in the early 2000s, thanks to its reasonable rents and trendy atmosphere.
We can’t talk about the Paris tech scene without mentioning Station F. Housed in the 34,000 square meter Halle Freyssinet in Paris, this mammoth tech hub was the brainchild of French entrepreneur and billionaire Xavier Niel.
Launched in 2017, it is home to over 1,000 startups and is now the biggest startup hub in the world. In the past, it has been described as a ‘university for startups’ and wiith such a supportive ecosystem, it’s only a matter of time before we see new tech giants emerge from this space.
A huge pull factor for tech workers thinking about moving to Paris is the enviable labour laws. These laws are in place to make sure that all employees get enough time for rest and relaxation.
In fact, workers in France won the ‘right to disconnect’ back in 2017. As a result, French companies with more than 50 employees guarantee workers the right to disconnect from technology when they leave the office.
Workers can also enjoy a 35-hour work week and a minimum of five weeks’ paid holiday a year, in addition to public holidays.
If you are hunting for an exciting new job in tech, then you should head straight over to Information Age Jobs!