Through January 28th, start-ups and entrepreneurs can apply to receive between €45,000 and €450,000 from the government and OSEO (French parapublic SME support organization).
And you don’t have to be French to score funds.
The contest is open to entrepreneurs of all nationalities (although the company needs to be set-up in France). If you’re just a Francophile with a good idea, it might be worth a shot. The online application can be found here.
France’s government financially supporting tech companies: not a new idea.
Believe it or not, this Concours national d’aide à la création d’entreprises de technologies innovantes has actually been around since 1999. That makes this the 11th annual contest.
Additionally, the government offers tons of financial assistance and subsidies to help fund new tech companies and start-ups. They also – as part of an initiative to boost local entrepreneurship – the auto-entrepreneur regime, to help soften the fiscal burden for independent entrepreneurs and start-ups. In 2009, this helped over 300,000 entrepreneurs put their ideas into practice.
Le Fonds stratégique d’investissement = the French government’s €20 billion VC fund.
The money is meant to support fast-growing companies and start-ups that are important for the French economy. Thus, the FSI has invested millions of euros in companies like DailyMotion, Avanquest Software, Gemalto and more.
More information on the FSI and VC in France (including a lovely VC Directory) can be found here (in French).
So if you’re looking for a little funding in France…
Angels and VCs may be one answer. And Sarkozy may be another.