Girls in Tech has been rapidly growing and evolving, especially this last year. As a global organization, we’ve been gaining unsurpassed support from corporate sponsors, partners, friends and like organizations around the world. We’re eternally grateful—this means more financial support for each chapter and net new curriculum for women and girls around the globe.
Paris, in particular, captures our hearts. The startup scene there is electric. We’re thrilled to play a part in the Paris tech ecosystem. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo once made a promise: to have more than 200,000 square meters of startup space, incubators and co-working centers in Paris by 2020. This “Innovation Arc” is already more than halfway complete. As of mid-year 2015, there was more than 100,000 square meters of startup incubators in the city.
The infrastructure in place to drive innovation
Today, Paris is jam-packed with incubators and other startup support programs. Le Cargo is financed by the city and all the regional councils of Paris. It offers enough room to host about 100 startups. However, Halle Freyssinnet earns the title of the world’s largest digital incubator. The massive space, slated to officially open in January of 2016, will house an astounding 1,000 startups. And Paris as a city has built an impressive level of infrastructure to support startups and innovation culture. For example, the Welcome Lab is a city-sponsored incubator wholly dedicated to tourism. And the city also aspires to offer boundless, free WiFi access.
The key players in the Paris startup scene
New startups are rapidly gaining traction, but you don’t have to look hard to spot the titans. Two startups, sigfox, an IoT startup, and blablacar, a ridesharing platform, each raised $100M rounds in 2015—that represents 33% of all funding in France last year! And whereas London has taken the reigns in fintech, Paris is leading in the hardware space. Hardware innovators such as Netatmo, Devialet and Scality are making waves.
Women, too, are taking over the city. Organizations like Women Techmakers have partnered with Google to provide increased support and resources for females in the startup community. And Girls in Tech hosted a Lady Pitch Night Europe competition last year that attracted more than 300 competitors. The competition took place at Bpifrance, one of the largest sources of financial strength for early- to mid-stage ventures.
Here’s a few more insights into what the Paris tech scene looks like today:
- Paris has been ranked as the sixth best European city for startups
- More than 22,600 startups in the city
- More than 140,000 are employed by startups in Paris
- France has a dedicated Minister for Digital Affairs, focused on encouraging more innovation to come to the city from outside of France
Come join us
We’re switching things up at Girls in Tech Paris. This means we’re looking for a shiny new team of dynamic managing directors. If you’re on board to collaborate with a global team of superstar managing directors, work with our incredible Silicon Valley Board and rally local supporters, then we want to talk to you! The Girls in Tech Managing Director will work to share Girls in Tech’s proprietary curriculum with Paris’ community of ambitious female go-getters.
Finally, thanks so much to Roxanne and her team for building up the Paris chapter to date! We appreciate everything.