'Ça marche!', a profile of early-stage business accelerators in France

Sarfati, Gilberto
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Early-stage company acceleration, while a relatively new phenomenon, is more and more popular among startup founders and are becoming a key element of the global entrepreneurship ecosystem. Those fixed-term, competitive and highly networked programs offer a wide array of resources, services and connections to participant companies. However, the business acceleration phenomenon remains scarcely studied considering the newness of the phenomenon and the availability of usable data, especially at national level. This study proposes an exploratory study of early-stage company acceleration in France and asks the question of what are the characteristics and differences of the French acceleration ecosystem in comparison with other ecosystems. The study is built upon a survey distributed among French accelerators in the country. The study shows strong evidence of a specific logic of company acceleration in France marked by a higher relative importance of accelerators in the ecosystem, contrasting with a lack of maturity of accelerators. This translates into a higher relative number of accelerators, a lower share of for-profit accelerators, strong variance in the portfolio of resources and services, including lower levels of investment end equity ownership by accelerators in the country.

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