Macron Is Bringing a Fintech Revolution to France

The fintech world is full of stories of companies rising from obscurity to sensation seemingly in the blink of an eye. Less common is a transformation of an entire market within five years—yet by all measures, that’s exactly what has happened in France. Since the election of President Emmanuel Macron in 2017, the number of unicorns in the country has increased nearly tenfold, from three in 2017 to more than 25 today. At the same time, capital investment has shot up from €2.5 billion in 2017 to more than €10 billion in 2021.

How has France accomplished such a major leap forward in fintech so quickly? The short answer is canny policy by Macron. There’s certainly no shortage of innovative entrepreneurs in the European market, but according to Clara Chappaz, director of government startup fostering initiative La French Tech, French fintech startups in particular have gotten an extra boost that has made all the difference.

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“The success of the French Tech ecosystem has been driven by the French government which, since 2017, has been implementing the biggest change in economic policy in recent decades by focusing on startup companies that will enable France to become a leading innovation hub,” Chappaz said in an interview.