Welcome to Hot Off the French Trade Press, a weekly round up of news items from French trade journals, magazines and newspapers, brought to you from the sectoral specialists here at UKTI France. For any questions or comments don’t hesitate to message us or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Biotech & Pharma
The biotech company CellProthera has developed laboratory equipment which can multiply adult stem cells contained in a patient’s blood sampling. Once purified they can be added to 15ml of the patient’s plasma and are ready to be used. If this automated process is validated by Health Authorities, CellProthera will launch an international clinical trial Phase II-III on 150 patients.(Source: Les Echos 9/02/2013)
The French market of dependence opens to SMEs
Each year in France, €34.6 billion are spent to accompany elderly people in their loss of autonomy. According to the national trade federation of private retirement homes – SYNERPA -, €24 billion are financed by local authorities (Government) through care and specialised equipment. The remaining €10.6 billion are paid by families and insurances. Today there are around 1.5 million of French people who are more than 80 years old. They will be 6.1 million in 2035 and 8.4 million in 2060, meaning that requirements in terms of equipment, services and financial support will increase significantly. In France, SMEs start grouping themselves under associations to offer a global service to their future customers. An opportunity to take advantage of! (Source: Les Echos 05/03/2013)
Environment & Chemicals
Compensating sustainable gestures
A young French start-up, CitéGreen, has devised an innovative compensation system with Grand Paris Seine-Ouest and Planète OUI to increase citizen participation in sustainable development. The system, which now counts 30 000 members, offers attractive green incentives such as an organic food-basket, a free organic meal, a magazine or video rental, for every ecological gesture recorded: a cycle ride, the use of renewable energy, waste disposal … The start-up, which signed its first partnership in 2011 with Vélib, the Parisian free rental service, wants to extend its activities and partnerships to other towns with cycle rental services. (Source: Usine Nouvelle, 28 Feb 2013)
Rail & Infrastructure
On Wednesday the French Government confirmed that the Grand Paris project would go ahead, with amendments to reduce the cost and maintain the delivery date for 2030. The project’s aim is to link up surburbs around Paris, as well as improving connectivity with the city centre. The 200 km looping automatic metro will link urband, commercial and innovation hubs in the Paris Ile-de-France region, transforming Greater Paris into a metropolis for the 21st century. (Source: Ville Rail et Transports, 06/03/13)
France launches research into its underground deep geothermal potential, a source of energy which still only represents 0.1% of the total electricity produced from renewable energies. Energy Minister last week issued permits for two companies, Fonroche and Electerre de France, to prospect sites near Pau, South East, and in the central regions of Cantal and Lozzère. 18 other similar demands are being considered, a sign of the vitality of this sector.
To mark the 8th of March, international woman’s day, the French Building Federation (FFB) has created new marketing communication on woman in the construction industry. The photo and accompanying logo hopes to promote construction excellence & femininity around what is often perceived as a very masculine industry.
The publicity aims to emphasize that woman who choose a career in building and construction are today naturally at ease with this choice and the sector attracts a feminine population who are passionate and motivated about their profession. The statistics speak for themselves with woman making up 11.1% of the sector (FFB 2010) and a growing presence at all levels such as obtaining construction qualifications and sector management positions.
Food & Drink
Several French superstore groups, including Carrefour, Intermarché, and Picard, have announced their intention to use French beef exclusively in their own-label ready meals. In the case of Carrefour this includes pork. In the wake of what the French media have described as “chevalgate”, retailers have been forced to act in order to restore consumer confidence. According to one market research consultancy, sales of beef-based ready meals slumped on average by 45% in February.