France is on the way to become the second biggest fintech hub in Europe by overtaking Germany. So far, fintech firms in France attracted investments worth €1.9 billion so far this year, which is more than double what they managed last year which was €711 million. France came third in terms of investments, only behind Germany and UK.
However, given France’s rapid growth, it will soon overtake Germany to become the second-biggest fintech hub in Europe. The German fintech sector attracted €2.6 billion in investment during the first nine months of this year. The UK remains the undisputed leader with an investment worth €9 billion. Even though ambitious, French junior minister for digital affairs Cedric O believes Paris will overtake London to become the leading tech hub in Europe.
One of the main reasons why fintech is booming in France is because of government initiatives. The Emmanuel Macron-led administration has been working to establish Paris as a leading tech hub in Europe through various new regulations and policies. One of the notable changes in policies brought in by the Marcon administration is the overhauling of tech visas. This has made it easier for France-based companies to attract talent from all over the world.
The positive approach from the government has encouraged foreign businesses to start operations in the country. This is also attracting foreign investors to explore and tap into the potential the sector in France possesses. Berlin-based Trade Republic and UK’s PrimaryBid expanded their businesses in France recently.
However, there is a long way to go for France to overtake the UK as the leading tech hub in Europe. London has established itself as a global financial hub because of its financial-services heritage, progressive policymaking and an administration that supports fintech innovation. Not to forget, some of the world’s biggest financial players have their headquarters in London. In short, France is up against a Goliath. London has managed to maintain its position despite Brexit when many feared, it will lead to London’s downfall. Even if France manages to topple London, it will take a very long time. So, a more realistic target for France is to overtake Germany. It is more likely that France will overtake Germany to become the second-leading fintech hub in Europe, but only time will tell.