Investors’ Gala: France ranks #1 for British investment

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© Business France UK

2021 was a record year for British investment in France. To celebrate these flourishing business relationships, Business France organised the 1st edition of the Investors’ Gala in London for the 30th of November. The Le Mans-based company Colart, which is investing more than €5 million in the region, was present there, alongside Business Solutions Atlantic France.

UK investment in France in 2021


France was the top European destination for British investment


The UK was the 3rd biggest investor in France (behind the US and Germany)


The number of UK investments in France went up by 25%

The numbers speak for themselves: 2021 was an exceptional year for business relationships between France and the UK. Almost 1 out of 10 jobs created or maintained by foreign investment in France in 2021 were done so thanks to UK investment, and two sectors have benefited the most: 

  • finance and insurance (#2 country for investment projects)
  • hospitality and tourism (55% of all jobs created or maintained in this sector)

Since 2018, France has been the most attractive economy in Europe, and we are working hard to keep up the good momentum. Proof of this is that for three years in a row, France has been the number one European destination for international investment, ahead of both Germany and the United Kingdom.

Hélène Duchêne, French Ambassador to the UK

A celebration of British investors such as Colart

A few days ago, Business France organised the first edition of the Investors’ Gala at the French Residence, in London. The event brought together French officials and business facilitators with 40 British business leaders in order to “reaffirm the enduring and essential economic ties between France and the United Kingdom”.

Atlantic France was one of the 4 French regions which were invited to the event. Our “Investor of the Year” award was awarded to the company Colart. The art materials supplier opened a factory in Le Mans in 1966 and transferred some production there from the UK in 2010, as well as from China more recently. 

Over the last few years, the British company has received major support from the Region, nearing €950,000. For its part, Colart has invested €3 million in its factory over the past three years and plans to invest a further €5-€10 million over the next 5 years, with the objective to achieve carbon neutrality in 2030.

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