Choose Paris Region released a comprehensive document entitled “Ready to use Industrial Sites” whose primary aim is to showcase to investors the region’s readily available industrial sites and facilitate the rapid expansion of their company. We had the opportunity to interview Lionel Grotto, CEO of Choose Paris Region, to learn more about it.
The document mentions Paris Region’s strong industrial base. It is linked to the Region’s thriving business ecosystem?
Paris Region’s industrial base is indeed what has made its economy very strong, diversified, and therefore competitive and in turn, led it to become an economic powerhouse. Indeed, it has the EU’s highest GDP, is home to Fortune 500 headquarters, and provides access to millions of consumers, in Europe and Africa.
How does Paris Region’s unique positioning play in favor of businesses?
Businesses benefit from a high-speed rail network providing frequent connections to major cities in France and Europe as well as three international airports offering direct flights to more than 260 destinations. With the Grand Paris Express and the 200 kilometers of new lines being built, new areas will emerge with good transport connectivity and with more affordable land and real estate prices.
Though France has a strong industrial base, many worry about how the industry will pick-up after Covid-19. What is your take on this?
France’s industrial base has strong and ancient roots, especially in the automotive, aeronautics, space, pharmaceutical, metallurgy, chemical, luxury and cosmetics industries. Furthermore, there are several sites readily available for industrial companies: they feature in this document, after a year-long work with our public and private partners.
But the attractiveness of the French industry also lies in its capacity to innovate. Paris Region is the number one destination in the world for R&D investments and is playing a leading role in the major technological advancements of the industry 4.0. The number of patents registered has allowed it to be ranked number one Tech Region of the Future.
Certainly, the COVID crisis is a blow to many sectors but certain industries, such as health or mobility are seeing increased activity now especially the digital sector. We are seeing more projects coming in from big corporates or smaller ones and are here to help them set-up. Furthermore, there are many programs to support industries face the consequences of COVID, whether they are struggling or growing. Choose Paris Region is there to explain what these programs entail and how companies can benefit from them.
What about the Region’s supply chains?
Transport and logistics play a vital role in the region’s economic prosperity: Paris region is one of Europe’s largest logistics markets. The supply chain is constantly modernized to ensure that distribution capabilities align with consumer expectations. Major logistics firms involved in shipping, express delivery, and freight such as FedEx, DHL, UPS, TNT, XPO Logistics, have chosen Paris Region, some of them for their European hub. For instance, DHL express recently invested €170 million in a new sorting facility in Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport.
The crisis has affected employment. Is it affecting Paris Region’s talent pool?
We saw very innovative solutions spring to life during the lockdown, showcasing the region’s booming start-up scene and the concentration of highly skilled talents. The talent pool is strong and will not go away. Some industries are hiring, others are dismissing staff, but the training system works to support people find jobs. On top of this, graduates are business savvy and trained in top-ranked Business Schools, such as INSEAD and HEC Paris. Paris Saclay University has also been ranked as the world’s top institution for Mathematics in the 2020 Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities. This is important when you want to best the best algorithms in artificial intelligence for your business.
Choose Paris Experts
Stéphane RivièreIndustrial Projects