On 12 February, L'Atelier BNP Paribas San Francisco welcomed the French Head of State during his official visit to the United States. François Hollande inaugurated the French Tech Hub, the new public incubator and accelerator for entrepreneurial French companies, in the presence of San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee.

This new “Maison de l'international” (“international house”) will help French startups operating in the digital arena to develop in the U.S. market by providing them with services tailored to their needs: business development, training, consulting, access to funding and more. It will share offices with L'Atelier BNP Paribas San Francisco, which itself mentors and advises young entrepreneurs.

François Hollande cited the important role played by the state in motivating and encouraging technological innovation, an engine of economic growth, job creation and wealth: “We can innovate in a French way”, he emphasised. And it is by providing support and simplifying the legal and social issues faced by French entrepreneurs that the government can help them to develop their creativity, their ambitions and their companies. The Head of State reiterated the government's willingness to provide an appropriate environment, and its interest in exploring innovative forms of raising funds, such as the launch in March of a crowdfunding platform that allows companies to raise up to €1 million per project.

The French Tech Hub in San Francisco, together with the Tech Hub in Boston and in association with the French Tech network in France, show promising signs of becoming “a showcase of French excellence and innovation”, in line with the aims of the President of the Republic and the Minister for Foreign Trade. These “Maisons de l'international” should encourage cross-investments.

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