In 2014, the French private equity industry saw a 22% increase in the amount committed by private individuals and family offices. Amy King looks at lessons to be learnt from the Entrepreneurs Funds Club founded by Afic.
The local entrepreneur community may not be as large as its Anglo-Saxon counterparts, but entrepreneurs have increasingly come to define the French investment industry. “The problem with the French,” George W Bush is rumoured to have said to Tony Blair, “is they don’t have a word for entrepreneur.”
François Hollande’s newly-elected government in 2012 revealed plans to tax capital gains at the same rate as income. In a campaign spearheaded by Jean-David Chamboredon, chairman and managing director of venture fund ISAI, the French entrepreneur-investor community rallied against the proposals. The collective proved a worthy opponent to the government, and the plans were retracted.
Three years on and entrepreneurs have continued to cement their position as investors. Realising their increasingly important contribution to the investment landscape, the national private equity and venture capital association, Association Française des Investisseurs pour la Croissance (Afic), has established the Club des Fonds d’Entrepreneurs (Entrepreneurs Funds Club).
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