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French startups leading exports for the first time

If the internet has no borders, it is often criticized by French companies for their lack of ambition on the international scene. Spoiler alert, the numbers say the opposite! In any case those of the study “Global Natives” conducted by Stripe and the US Viga study institute with more than 10 000 leaders of technology companies in 15 countries (South Africa, Germany, Australia , China, Spain, United States, France, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, United Kingdom and Singapore), which highlights the obstacles and factors of international development of young people online businesses.

Among the trends to remember, therefore: the one that France is far from falling behind in the era of e-commerce since it ranks fourth behind Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan with 84% of French online businesses who have an international activity.

And while it took 31 years for traditional companies such as Louis Vuitton or Publicis to start selling outside our borders, 69% of French online businesses already have an international business in the first year or so. % after two years. French companies are seeking to expand in the United States (19%), China (17%) and Europe (16%).

If internationalization is so early, it is that the results are there and that growth is at the rendezvous. During the five

In recent years, the study shows that companies that entered the international markets in their first year of existence recorded a nice rise in their turnover and workforce, with respectively 141 percentage points and 15 percentage points more than those who took longer to conquer international markets. Of course, the correlation could also be done in the opposite direction, as internationalization is made possible by strong growth in the respondents.

Effective online tools

“Globalization is the cornerstone of economic progress and innovation,” says Guillaume Princen, Managing Director Europe de Stripe. The disappearance of borders, thanks to technology, has radically modified the equation for companies and individuals, by facilitating international sales ”

Of course, globalization is now made possible by the proliferation of digital tools available to businesses. Marketplaces, payment solutions, hosting, CMS, online advertising technologies, location services or cloud infrastructures … These tools are becoming cheaper and more and more easy to use. It has never been so easy to sell on the other side of the world. And in terms of marketing, social networks are a gold mine. Half of the online businesses say that social media is their # 1 international marketing channel, ahead of traditional advertising (43%) and website localization (40%).

The French are also particularly satisfied with the government’s support to businesses: 37% put it forward as an international development facilitation factor and 50% consider it “good” or “excellent”. Notably, France is the country with the highest proportion of “excellent” (23.6%).

Foreign government policies that hold back exports

But not all countries are equal to import/export. Thus, the biggest obstacles put forward by the French respondents regarding their internationalization are taxation (33%) and regulations (28%). The repercussions are particularly difficult to manage for startups and start-ups that do not have sufficient funds to invest in the creation of a legal department or dedicated to these issues.

Frustration is reflected in France by a desire for a kind of Small Business Act among respondents. The French are more sensitive to protectionism (79%) than other countries, but refuse customs barriers (68%). French entrepreneurs would also like to be protected against foreign competition while increasing their sales (51%).

The World Trade Organization has announced the opening of international discussions on the harmonization of electronic commerce on January 25 at the Davos forum. Among the measures envisaged are resolving the obstacles preventing cross-border sales or guaranteeing the validity of electronic contracts and electronic signatures.

Published inStartups

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