Talk to anyone from Silicon Valley about French names in hi-tech and you’ll systematically get the 3 same answers: Loic Le Meur, Jeff Clavier and Pierre Omidyar – if you’re lucky. But how about French entrepreneurs in France? In an earlier post I suggested putting French entrepreneur success stories on milk cartons to remind us […]Read More Have You Seen Me? 9 French Entrepreneur Names to Know
Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry published an article in Silicon Alley Insider today on the negative impact of the hierarchical French education system on entrepreneurship. Let’s take a look at his argument for “Why France fails at start-ups”, shall we? Is “Grande école” French for “Ivy League”? For all the Silicon Alley Insider readers that saw the term “grande […]Read More You Suck! Entrepreneurship and Elite French Education
This is a quick follow-up on the Wikipedia initiative, which has proven to be quite interesting. Yoocasa: my guinea pig. Some companies are simply too young for Wikipedia. My first start-up to join the cause, Yoocasa, was removed after only a few hours. Sad, but true. Which is surprising because I have seen many companies […]Read More Wikipedia Initiative: Plan B
Far from anything being discussed at SXSW, this is a quick post on something I just noticed: There are a lot of French start-ups that are MIA on Wikipedia. Obviously it’d be great to develop some kind of French start-up database, but let’s first concentrate on the basics: Wikipedia. Yeah, so? Hopefully I don’t need […]Read More The French Start-up Wikipedia Initiative
I’m considering starting a weekly tradition where I give a shoutout to a French company that is doing something I find particularly innovative. Well, this week that company is Lyon-based Regioneo – who launched a user-investment campaign, which I detailed in TechCrunch Europe. Why is there no translation for “bon appétit” in English? In case […]Read More Smart Money: French companies get creative with funding
Somehow, the conversation always ends up on which Silicon Valley companies are MIA in France. A week or two ago, Deezer’s Jonathan Benassaya posted this comment on Twitter: Opentable actually launched in France in 2008 and ironically their product didn’t take off – so I am told. French restaurants were too traditional to go electronic […]Read More Under the radar: Are some French companies hiding?
Alright, it’s high time we set the record straight. I met with yet another French entrepreneur this morning that seemed to think France was void of decent exits. Well, guess again. Have you seen me? In the US, whenever a child or a person goes missing, his or her face shows up on a milk carton (or at least, it […]Read More Bienvenue en France: Welcome to Exitland
Paul Carr published an article in TechCrunch a few days ago and naturally the title caught my eye: Cherchez la fame – or why the media’s obsession with Twitter campaigns will make customer service smell French. A word on smelling French. What I think is a little ironic in this article is that “smelling French” […]Read More Smelling French: Not Such a Bad Thing
Last week, Zlio’s Jérémie Berrebi and Iliad’s Xavier Niel announced the launch of their new seed fund, Kima Ventures, which I wrote about in TechCrunch Europe. Kima’s aim is to invest between €5,000 and €150,000 in 100 start-ups within the next 2 years. Uh, that’s a lot of seed. There’s been a lot of whispering about whether […]Read More Le Seed: FCombinator and the TechEtoiles
Everytime I meet a new entrepreneur – French, American or otherwise – the topic comes up: What are the differences between being an entrepreneur in the US and in France? In my former job, I was constantly confronted with the opinion from the other side of the Atlantic vis-à-vis doing business in France: “The French are always […]Read More Dear US Entrepreneurs, You Have it Easy.