Lyon French Tech: for start-ups driving digital transformation


 French Tech  describes those working in or for French start-ups in France or abroad. Mainly entrepreneurs, but also investors, engineers, designers, developers, major groups, associations, media, public operators and research institutes that help start-ups and work to secure their international visibility and reach. This satellite of the Ministry of Economy is a point of access and orientation, acting as a sounding board on both national and international scales. The Lyon French Tech association, active across the Lyon area, has the same goal: to unite, to connect, to co-construct and also to reflect the dynamic nature of Lyon Metropole abroad.

The Lyon team, composed of a dedicated and active administrative board (19 structures and organisations) and 3 people working in operations, manages not only the local implementation of these French Tech tools, but the running of local education and training sites, support and funding, digital transformation, a Totem site, the dynamic of French Tech and Lyon’s international appeal while promoting all of its actions.

French Tech tools for entrepreneurs

To ensure it is successful, French Tech relies on four tools supplied by the ministry:

  • The French Tech Grant is for project leaders and start-ups that are just setting out. The aim is to facilitate the development of exemplary and novel projects by giving subsidies to entrepreneurs.
  • The French Tech Pass supports scale-ups – i.e high-potential start-ups that have proved their business model, found their market and are experiencing strong growth within that market- by offering them a tailor-made service.
  • The French Tech accelerator fund finances and approves private accelerators for start-ups.
  • The French Tech Ticket, which is still under development, is a programme to attract people looking to create their start-up in France. The ticket includes ‘housing’ your company at an incubator, financial support, accelerated administrative procedures, and a help-desk, among other things.


Lyon French Tech, specifically positioned.

Local French Tech is spearheading digital transformation, with a particular focus on international enhancement by regularly sending delegations abroad to present Lyon and its start-ups, actors of this digital transformation, but also via the Club des Entreprises, which unites all French Tech actors.

Lyon’s association is set apart by its powerful governance and ecosystem, which boosts its influence and accelerates its actions. Thus, public and private actors, whether academics or scientists, entrepreneurs, incubators, accelerators, fablabs, professional associations, competitive clusters, clusters, professionals and institutions work together to enable innovative projects to benefit from the best possible services, creating an open, cross curricula and collaborative precedent and encouraging mobilisation. To ensure success, French Tech invests a lot in the quality of the support it provides through the fast and effective creation of connections between all the actors involved in a company’s life cycle. This is how the Lyon association helps companies from the seed phase to acceleration and the internationalisation of start-ups by pointing them in the right direction and using the tools made available by French Tech.

This plethora of skills is what makes Lyon a major actor of the digital sector and its innovations in new technologies. The digital Clust’R has thus experienced unprecedented, rapid acceleration to become the largest digital cluster in France. Collective accelerator programmes, such as BIG Booster and Digital Booster have emerged, as well as events organised in Lyon in segments such as the web or the IOT with Blend Web Mix and SIDO are now major national and international events on these themes. Synonymous with appeal, Lyon attracted 26 companies from the digital sector in 2015, including start-ups, SMEs and also signatures brands such as Ubisfot and Xilam.

The next steps…

To enrich its activities with entrepreneurs on an international scale, Lyon French Tech is already envisaging theme-based network building with its local sectors of excellence. The local association knows how universally applicable the digital sector and its evolutions are. In particular, they are applicable in certain sectors of activity that use digital technology and follow its evolution. Thus, health (BioTech/MedTech), Cultural and Creative industries, CleanTech (Smart Grids, Mobility, Chimicals and the Environment), the IOT /Robotics / la Cybersecurity, FoodTech, Fin Tech and more globally, CityTech, are just some of the sectors considered as having potential.

Finally, Lyon French Tech has high expectations for the French Tech Ticket tool, which will enable it to promote its actions to international targets within a Lyonnais ecosystem that has certainly set off in the right direction!

© 2021