I’ve been wanting to do a post on this topic for a while – because whenever someone tells me that it’s insanely difficult to launch a start-up in France, I chuckle to myself and think: “Hey, if 20-something-year-olds are doing it fresh out of school, it can’t be that hard, right?” I also have recently noticed that becoming an entrepreneur from a young age is becoming more à la mode – so here is my list to set the record straight.
Hot or not?
The trouble is there are actually a lot of young entrepreneurs out there. This list is insanely far from exhaustive and is just a few names that I think are likely to stick around for a while. As the entrepreneurial community is predominantly male, I should also probably clarify that by “hot” I am referring strictly to their start-ups. After all, this is not my attempt to be the Franco-version of Valleywag. PS. You’ll notice that I’ve chosen 8 companies and 13 names.
Read More 13 hot French entrepreneurs under 30
Ah, I should say best of French start-ups on DailyMotion, shouldn’t I? Truth is, I wanted to use DailyMotion videos but a lot of the content wasn’t on their site. Tsk tsk French start-ups for not supporting each others’ businesses! Then again, in this Google-dominated internet world, who can really blame them.
I just thought I’d do a quick post on 5 of my favorite YouTube videos from French start-ups.
This is hands down my favorite French start-up video on YouTube. It tells the story of Deezer’s creation, the legal obstacles they had to overcome with music on the internet. Great music, great story, great animation.
Read More Best of French Start-ups on YouTube
It happens a lot. An innovative business model will work really well for one market and new companies will adopt the same model and simply apply it to different products and services. Essentially what Amazon did for books and Zappos did for shoes.
And it ends up working like a chain.
Read More Chain reaction: French cookie cutter business models
The French for some reason get a lot of crap about their English. Ok, it’s got a little ring to it but that’s not really anything to write home about.
Accents are charming. Period.
What’s not charming, however, is limited market reach – which you unfortunately get if you’re going to limit yourself to a non-English language. I can’t even count the number of times I have discussed the topic – if you want to go global in today’s world, you kind of have to speak English, too. Duh.
I actually think that French start-ups understand that they need to be bilingual. France has made remarkable progress, linguistically – and the TechCrunch Paris event that was held entirely in English last week goes to prove it. Plus, I think I’ve brought up before that there are numerous local start-ups, like Silentale, that don’t even have French on their websites.
I still, however, stand by Deezer’s French Twitter account – which was attacked by Robert Scoble last year at LeWeb. Seriously, would Deezer have 11 million users if their Twitter didn’t address the local population? Don’t think so. I sound like a broken record…
Read More Pardon my French