“La French Tech is the French movement of start-ups”. This is how the initiative launched in 2013 by the French authorities is defined. This label aims at developing the attractiveness of France for start-ups, promote the emergence of promising start-ups and give them the means to develop.
Developing France’s attractiveness means allowing foreign talent to easily integrate French start-ups, and making their life easier. This does not go hand in hand with long and cumbersome immigration procedures. On the contrary, the arrival in France of these employees must be simple and quick, to allow French start-ups to be agile and efficient in their recruitment. Similarly, foreign nationals wishing to invest in a French startup or come to found an innovative company in France must be able to easily obtain a work and residence permit in the territory.
In the wake of these ambitions, several categories of “French Tech Visa” were born for startuppers:
- the French Tech Visa for Employees: Passeport Talent Salarié d’une entreprise innovante
- the French Tech Visa for Investors: Passeport Talent Investisseur
- the French Tech Visa for Founders: Passeport Talent Projet économique innovant
Like all Passeport Talent categories, these titles have the following key benefits:
- a great simplification of the procedure for obtaining: the application is submitted directly to the French consulate of the country of residence (in the event of residence abroad, otherwise in the prefecture). In a few weeks, the employee can arrive in France and start his activity.
- The application for a residence permit is made in a digitalized way, not forcing the applicant to queue for in the local immigration office, and the card has a comfortable period of validity of 4 years that can be renewed.
- The applicant’s immediate family (spouse and minor children) is authorized to accompany them to France, under a Passeport Talent Famille status. The spouse is also authorized to work in France, facilitating their integration and their life project in France.
In terms of eligibility criteria, what counts isn’t really the level of salary or the number of years of academic training. It is the innovative character of the foreigner’s project or of the company that is seeking employment of a foreigner. This innovative character is granted by the French Ministry of Economy with regards to the company’s research and development project. This results in the status of Young Innovative Firm (Jeune Entreprise Innovante – JEI) also giving the right to tax relief, or of French Tech Innovative Company.
With 11.57 billion euros raised in 2021 by French startups and 121 French Tech entities around the world, the French Tech Visa promises to further contribute to the hyper-growth of the French Tech ecosystem. The bet to make France a stronghold of global innovation is about to be won.