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Companies in France - statistics & facts

The French production system is one of the most important in Europe. In 2020, the total of goods and services produced in France amounted to 2.3 trillion euros, the second largest in Europe after Germany. In 2019, the French economy was made up of nearly four million companies. It's a productive power that has significantly increased since 2011 thanks to the emergence of a new type of organization, the micro-enterprise.

The boom of consulting companies & micro-business

Launched in 2008 under François Fillon’s government, the formerly auto-entrepreneur and now micro-entrepeneur status was intended to facilitate the administrative and financial management of the self-employed. Eleven years later, there were more than 3.8 million micro-enterprises. The same year, at the other end of the work chain, there were more than 4,750 companies that employed more than 250 employees. From an industry point of view, it is in the trade sector where the most businesses are being created in France.
Companies offering support activities to other organizations are very popular in France. Indeed, in 2021, more than 150,000 such companies were founded. Nearly a third of the new businesses were micro-enterprises.

Diversity of taxes in France

Capital taxation, payroll taxes, value-added and turnover tax, taxation of results are the direct taxes to be paid by companies in France. In 2020, the total amount of direct company taxes was more than 137 billion euros. By way of comparison, the total amount of income tax paid by French companies amounted to almost 100 billion euros in 2021. Some companies benefit from tax exemptions or reductions depending on their sector or turnover. In 2021, more than seven million companies in France paid VAT.

Entrepreneurship in France

In 2018, more than half of the French population said they had an entrepreneurial spirit. Is it linked to a quest for personal fulfillment? For 37 percent of French entrepreneurs, this is mainly due to the inability to find paid work in a company. But the primary motivation is, above all, to face new challenges.
Women will have to take on these challenges in order to reach leadership positions in business. In 2016, women's wages were still lower than men's. The largest gap was on average among managers. In fact, in 2015, eight of the eight highest-paid CEOs in the world were men. Pay inequalities also vary widely from country to country. In the U.S., a CEO earns 265 times the salary of an average worker.

Companies and recruitment

The coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic shook the French economy in 2020. However, as of July 2022, 87 percent of employers said they could maintain their workforce. Companies in the industry sector are the most pessimistic about the possibility of recruiting or retaining employees, with five percent of recruiters saying they would have to reduce their staff. The crisis has also had an impact on employees. In the spring of 2022, half of French employees in both the public and private sectors reported that they felt less attached to their company than they did before the health crisis.

Interesting statistics

In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 33 most important statistics relating to "Companies in France".


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