Why the stock market is no longer the royal road for companies that want to develop

Two young French shoots, Qonto and Back Market, are now valued at several billion euros, thanks to mainly foreign investors.

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Business continues despite the crisis. In the space of a day, Qonto and Back Market, two small French new technology companies raised hundreds of millions of euros from investors. They now each weigh between four and five billion euros in capital. Qonto is a specialist in payment methods dedicated to businesses and Back Market is a site specializing in the resale of refurbished electronic objects. Two sectors that have nothing to do but whose future interests funders.

On Tuesday January 11, Qonto raised more than 480 million euros, Back Market 450 million euros. Investors come from a variety of backgrounds, but there are a lot of foreigners. If the French fund Eurazeo is almost always in the game, young French shoots are seeing American and Chinese money pouring in. This is called venture capital. And in this area, France is keeping pace with Europe. The amount of investments of this type has practically tripled since 2015. Last year, French start-ups raised five billion euros despite the crisis, in the United States it rose to 140 billion. And the movement is accelerating in France.

Unicorns are young, unlisted companies valued at over $ 1 billion, roughly 880 million euros. There are 24 today in France. There were only three in 2017. Before Back Market specializing in the resale of refurbished electronic objects, last year there was ManoMano specializing in DIY and gardening. Visibly promising activities in the eyes of investors.

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