What the new French President means for startups

Yes, that’s right, over the weekend France elected a new President, François Hollande. It came as a bit of a surprise to many, as the country has not has a Socialist President since François Mitterrand in 1995 – nor has a President only served 1 term since Valéry Giscard-d’Estaing left office in 1981. Still, clearly France made the decision to move on and turn a new page. So, what does this mean for startups?

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The 2012 list: 13 Hot French Entrepreneurs Under 30

For the last 2 years, I’ve been publishing an annual list of some of France’s hottest entrepreneurs under 30. You can check out the lists for 2010 and 2011. Usually I pick all the people for the list myself. However, this year, I decided to take suggestions from the crowd. I got an overwhelming number of suggestions and I want to thank everyone for their contributions. Just as a quick reminder, if someone has already appeared on this list in previous years, they unfortunately cannot be re-selected.

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Leaving the Rude Baguette

A few months ago, I announced that I had moved and that I would now be blogging on another site: The RudeBaguette. The decision to launch Rude essentially came from the idea that France needed an English-language news site to cover all the ridiculously amazing startup happenings going on there. So I approached one of the only other native English-speaking bloggers I knew to do it with me. And off we went.

Read More Leaving the Rude Baguette

Seeking: talented French entrepreneurs under 30 for recognition

So if anyone has bothered to read this blog over the last few years, you’ll know that I publish an annual list called 13 hot French entrepreneurs under 30. Some of the names who made the list in 2010 include the founders of hot French startups like Deezer, MediaStay, Spartoo, MyMajorCompany, Leetchi, Restopolitan and more. And last year’s list included similar startup stars, like the founders of JolieBox, Owlient, Jimmy Fairly, L’Usine à Design and more.

Read More Seeking: talented French entrepreneurs under 30 for recognition

TechBaguette has Moved. Well, Kinda.

I probably should’ve written this post a while ago to kind of clarify where I am writing these days. For anyone who hasn’t yet noticed, I’m not writing for TechCrunch anymore. And it has nothing to do with what’s been going on with AOL in the US – although, the fact that Michael Arrington, MG Siegler, Paul Carr, Sarah Lacy and Heather Harde no longer work there perhaps makes it a little less sexy. But hey. The fact of the matter is that I always said that if I wrote about French tech companies, I wanted it to be in English – so that the news could go even beyond France. That’s why I started blogging in the first place.

Read More TechBaguette has Moved. Well, Kinda.

Thoughts on Being Hungry and Foolish

As you can tell, it took me a while to decide whether or not to write something about Steve Jobs. At first, I thought it was perhaps a little cliché. After all, everyone is writing about Steve right now (yes, we’re on a first-name basis) – my words would simply get lost in the crowd. But then again, how could I not? Steve is one of America’s most celebrated modern visionaries – and the footprint he left will forever mark the development of technology, culture, business and much more. And on a much more personal note, he is one of the most inspirational people I have ever discovered.

Read More Thoughts on Being Hungry and Foolish

Come on Europe, Startups are for Losers.

No matter how much we try to avoid it, people seem to always revert back to comparing the European tech scene with that of Silicon Valley. In many ways, it’s a bit silly and irrational. Like comparing apples and oranges. After all, the European market is highly fragmented in dozens of ways and faces numerous challenges that the US market does not. Then again, it’s a necessary step in understanding why entrepreneurship thrives in certain environments and not others. (By the way, I’ll be moderating a panel on this very topic at the Advance Conference in Germany later this month.)

Read More Come on Europe, Startups are for Losers.

The (new) 13 hot French entrepreneurs under 30

It’s funny – one of the more popular posts that I’ve written on this blog was the 13 hot French entrepreneurs under 30 list. It still gets hits and it was published over a year ago. So I figure it’s time to give it a little update for 2 reasons: first, because some of those people are no longer under 30 and also because there are definitely new names to add to the list! Yes, my friends, there has definitely been a dramatic increase in the number of young entrepreneurs in France. So in no particular order, here comes some names that I feel should be added to the list.

Read More The (new) 13 hot French entrepreneurs under 30

The Father of Modern Venture Capital was F-R-E-N-C-H

Usually when I tell people I’m doing a Masters degree in International Political Economy, they look at me funny and follow-up with a “Huh, I guess that doesn’t really have much to do with tech.” And for a long time, I felt this way too. The IMF, the World Bank, the WTO, sovereign debt, currency crises, oil shocks, etc. didn’t really seem to overlap much with startups and innovation. But then again, startups and innovation are at the heart of economic development and growth. Therefore it’s almost impossible not to draw connections between the two fields.

Read More The Father of Modern Venture Capital was F-R-E-N-C-H