Rail and Urban transport
Rail Freight Meetings in spotlight at SITL Paris 2015
Rail Freight Meetings in spotlight at SITL Paris 2015
With workshops, a showroom and work areas across a space of 300 m², the Rail Freight Meetings will constitute one of the key innovations at SITL Paris 2015, which will be taking place from 31 March to 2 April in Paris (France). Innovative players such as Herta France, SNCF Freight and Agenia are looking forward to this key event. Under the aegis of France’s Secretary of State for Transport, the Rail Freight Meetings reflect the measures entrusted to the Association of Freight Transport Users (or AUTF, in French) following the ministerial conferences held with respect to the revival of rail freight in France.
The aim is to have a business dialogue at the service of growth in the rail industry, and, more particularly, to match supply and demand in the field of rail freight and combined road-rail transport by means of business meetings between shippers and all those involved in the rail-industry value chain.
The three case studies below illustrate the scope and interest of the Rail Freight Meetings due to take place at SITL Paris 2015, from 31 March to 2 April of this year.
CASE STUDY 1: HERTA FRANCE
"We would like to use rail freight and combined road-rail but we do not find that the shoe fits,” says Marc Bernard, Transport & Supply Chain Projects Manager for Herta France — a comment which reflects the difficulty faced by shippers when evaluating current rail and multimodal offerings.
"Traffic volumes and the will to deploy these alternative solutions exist,” points out Christian Rose, Executive Officer at AUTF, who bases his comment on an audit carried out among purchasing managers. "Though they lack visibility in terms of capacity and rail operations, compared to the very dynamic road possibilities.”
A subsidiary of the Nestlé Group, Herta France operates factories in Arras (northern France) and Strasbourg (eastern France) that process 95,000 tonnes of food products per year. Using controlled-temperature storage, the goods are sent daily to two logistical hubs — one located in Ile-de-France (i.e. the Paris Region) and the other in the Lyons region — before being sent on to supply the retail trade.
"This just-in-time logistics process, today, is done 100% by road. On the Arras-Lyons link, for example, we use up to 12 refrigerated trucks per day,” laments Marc Bernard. From the agricultural producer through to the consumer, Herta France’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) targets mean, in practice, that the company must actively seek sustainable organisations that reduce its carbon footprint in relation to all the links in its supply chain.
"Implemented in the choice of raw materials, production methodology, packaging, etc., our social-responsibility plan also covers our out-bound logistics. This is the reason why we are looking for rail and multimodal solutions linked to our retail clients,” explains Marc Bernard.
With this aim in mind, Herta France will be at the Rail Freight Meetings: "This event is a time-benefit accelerator, which will help us to achieve our ambition to lower our distribution carbon footprint. Herta wants to use rail and combined freight,” says Marc Bernard, who has high expectations of the trade show.
At the Rail Freight Meetings, the manufacturer hopes to better understand how the rail sector operates. "We want to develop links with the professionals who can best respond to our logistics needs right through to the final customer, and also discover all the available multimodal innovations,” explains Marc Bernard.
CASE STUDY 2: SNCF FREIGHT Rail services have evolved over the last decade and have, in many ways, been revitalised. "Deregulation has put the clients and their requirements at the heart of the issue. Competition and the effects of the [financial] crisis have led to a rethink of the service and internal organisation of SNCF Freight,” says Olivier Juban, Director of SNCF, the State-owned French railway operator.
It is in this context that the Rail Freight Meetings are an excellent occasion for SNCF Freight to meet procurement managers in order to explain current industry developments and, also, how the railway sector can respond to logistics challenges.
Shared services, Multi-Lots/Multi-Clients options, long trains, combined rail-road initiatives, and ‘rail highways’ are various aspects of the range of solutions developed by SNCF Freight, which demonstrate the company’s efficiency and relevance. "Driven by teams managing production and sales, the solutions are configured to respond to the complex logistics challenge from purchasers within a framework of sustainable collaboration,” explains Olivier Juban.
CASE STUDY 3: AGENIA
Agenia is a subsidiary of NGE, a multi-expertise group in the field of public works with a turnover of €1.5 billion. Agenia works with shippers, local communities and logistics hubs in order to develop sound rail-transport links and multimodal solutions.
“The expertise of Agenia is wide-ranging: from the construction and management of rail infrastructure through to developing rail-freight offerings, and including the management of hubs and network maintenance,” says Michel Colombié, CEO.
On this basis, Agenia is the partner of Moulins Communauté in order to develop jointly the LOGIPARC 03 rail centre, in Moulins (central France).
The logistics of a rail network go well beyond mere point-to-point traffic management. Indeed, Agenia’s added-value proposition comes from its ability to interlink connected services: handling, door-to-door transport, rail-road combined transport, connections to inland networks as well as ports, and so on.
“These extended services that include the management of infrastructures are essential in order to guarantee a premium service quality which responds to the challenges of the modern supply chain. At LOGIPARC 03, Agenia has developed this offering in partnership with Transports Terrancle and Eurorail,” explains Michel Colombié.
These are concrete examples of the potential offered by the pooling of rail-sector skills and multimodal complementarities — common themes of the Rail Freight Meetings at SITL Paris 2015, to be held in Paris (France) between 31 March and 2 April of this year.
About Reed Expositions
Reed Expositions is the French subsidiary of Reed Exhibitions, the worlds leading event organiser. Reed Expositions organizes over 50 trade shows per year in France across a range of sectors including transport and logistics.
Reed Expositions will be organising Transport Next Generation 2015, a new event that will run concurrently with SITL Paris 2015, as well as Intralogistics Europe 2015. These events will take place from 31 March to 2 April 2015 in Hall 7.2 of the Paris Porte de Versailles Exhibition Centre, in the southeast of Paris (France).
For further information about this press release, you can contact Ms Silviane Dubail of SD COM on: +33 (0)6 07 53 53 43 (telephone) and firstname.lastname@example.org (email).
For further information about Reed Expositions, please go to: http://www.reedexpo.fr
For further information about the different trade shows, please go to: http://www.sitl.eu/index.php?Lang=gb
Telecommunications and Space
Business France showcases 120 technology innovators at MWC 2015
For the ninth consecutive year, Business France, the national agency supporting the international development of French businesses, is organising the French Tech pavilion at Mobile World Congress (MWC), the trade show for the mobile-telecoms sector taking place in Barcelona (Spain) from 2 to 5 March 2015. There will be 120 SMEs and start-ups on the French Tech pavilion – the largest national pavilion at MWC 2015.
The French Tech pavilion will enable several partner regions, such as Brittany, Ile-de-France, Languedoc Roussillon, Midi-Pyrénées and Provence-Alpes-Côte-dAzur to be represented at the trade show. Additionally, high-technology clusters will have stands of their own on the French Tech pavilion, with Systematic Paris Region and Solutions Communicantes Sécurisées (Secure Communicating Solutions), the latter being based in Provence (south-eastern France). With a surface area of 560m², the French Tech pavilion will be the largest national pavilion at the trade show. It will comprise three booths in Hall 5 (5 B41, 5 B61 and 5 B71) and two booths in Hall 8.1 (8.1 D41 and 8.1 E49), known as the APP PLANET. The 120 companies hosted by the French Tech pavilion are specialists in a range of areas within the telecommunications industry, such as mobile apps, the telecoms infrastructure, mobile advertising, mobile marketing, telephone-based games, accessories, engineering services, and financial services.
The offices of Business France in Brazil, China, India, Israel, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain and the UK have helped organise the French Tech pavilion by setting up B-to-B meetings between French exhibitor companies and representatives of leading international groups such as LG, Samsung, Huawei, Telefonica and Vodafone Spain.
Mrs Axelle Lemaire, France’s Minister of State for the Digital Industry, will visit Mobile World Congress 2015 in order to help promote French excellence in the field of technological innovation at MWC. Many innovations will be showcased during the trade fair: below is a snapshot, with four companies that will exhibit on the French Tech pavilion at the trade show.
The full list of exhibitors on the French Tech pavilion is available here: http://mwc.ubifrance-events.com/; further details can be sent on request.
COPSONIC is exhibiting the first patented universal mobile-payment system, compatible with all mobile devices on the market. COPSONIC’s technology heralds the future of secure hands-free payment systems. Using sound waves as a means of exchanging consumers secure data, this system has the ability to transform any telephone, whether a less advanced model (such as the Nokia 3310) or the very latest iPhone, into a contactless payment device.
FAMOCO, a Near Field Communication (NFC) specialist, develops high-tech information systems in many areas where identification and access control are required (e-governance, contactless payments, mobile point-of-sale technology, etc.). At MWC, FAMOCO will present its unique solution for next-generation, secure and connected NFC readers that combines smartphone technology with the security requirements of the bank-card sector.
OLEDCOMM, a Light Fidelity (LiFi) solutions operator, will showcase its new optical wireless-communications technology, which uses LED lighting to transmit digital data. LiFi has opened up a new era for wireless-data transmission because it generates no electromagnetic pollution, does not saturate bandwidth, and is much cheaper to deploy than WiFi-based systems. This technology will allow the densest very-high-speed internet network in the world to be rolled out, turning the 14 billion light spots worldwide into LiFi spots.
PRADEO has developed Trust Revealing, a behaviour-analysis engine for applications. With this technology, which lies at the core of its range of products and services, Pradeo can offer its customers enhanced security for their applications and better protection from attacks by cyber-criminals (which can be carried out using micro-apps available in high-street stores).
About Business France
Business France is the French national agency supporting the international development of the French economy. Business France’s responsibilities encompass the international development of companies and their exports, as well as prospecting for (and receiving) international investments in France. Business France also promotes the attractiveness and image of France, its companies, and its regions. Finally, Business France manages and develops the Volontariat International en Entreprise (VIE) programme, for the deployment of young graduates across the globe.
Created on 1 January 2015, Business France was formed out of the merger of export-support agency UBIFRANCE with inward-investment agency Agence française pour les investissements internationaux (AFII). Business France has 1,500 employees in France and 70 other countries. It is backed by a network of public- and private-sector partners.
The French Tech pavilion at Mobile World Congress (MWC), in Barcelona (Spain), will feature three booths in Hall 5 (5 B41, 5 B61, 5 B71) and two booths in Hall 8.1 (8.1 D41, 8.1 E49). With 120 companies and related entities, the French Tech pavilion promises to be the largest of its kind at the trade fair, which takes place from 2 to 5 March 2015.
For further information about the trade show, please go to: http://www.mobileworldcongress.com/
For more information about Business France, please go to: www.businessfrance.fr
Electronics and IT
SERSA, a French-based company specializing in the design and development of global solutions for the industrial-electronics sector, has launched IHM Crystal-IN, a graphics card designed to enhance screen-graphic interfaces.
Seeking to simplify the ergonomics of their products, industrialists are increasingly turning to colour graphic displays, with or without a touchscreen interface, which require substantial investment in software-development skills and hardware capabilities. With this in mind, and in order to meet its customers’ demands, SERSA has developed the IHM Crystal-IN graphics card.
The IHM Crystal-IN graphics card is built around a powerful Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) and avoids the need to use an operating system such as Windows, Android or Linux, which, in turn, ensures increased reliability in harsh environments such as those found in industry.
This autonomous solution offers a range of benefits to the user, including reduced development time and easy implementation; scalability towards a variety of graphic displays (from 3” to 10”, colour screen, glass touchscreen, etc.); an integrated Flash Player; and, finally, reduced costs. The integrated Flash Player ensures that the content is produced to the highest quality standards possible, no matter what the final resolution may be.
With Flash, developers can create graphics interfaces with high-level office tools directly on any platform equipped with a Flash reader, without having to write a graphics code. Thanks to SERSA’s IHM Crystal-IN graphics card, users are finally able to make the most of the many advantages of this technology and overcome the limitations of embedded software.
The solutions developed by SERSA have many applications. Indeed, SERSA’s know-how is already widely acknowledged across industries such as bakeries, pastry making, and the hospitality sector. The many SERSA card functionalities (USB, WiFi, HACCP, Control, etc.) are integrated into customers’ products according to their needs. Products may include beaters, deep-freezers, deep-fryers, hot-transfer banqueting trolleys, mixers, ovens, retarder-proving equipment, and more. To date, SERSA has equipped thousands of operational machines worldwide.
Founded in 1985, SERSA Electronique is a French-based specialist company that designs and develops global solutions for the industrial-electronics sector. The company is headquartered in Paris and has an annual turnover of €4.7 million.
Offering customised and innovative studies in order to meet individual, technical requirements, SERSA guides its customers in their search for a wholesale solution all the way from the study phase to the delivery of completed, operational units.
SERSA believes in a long-term, commercial-partnership approach by anticipating customer needs and providing its clients with technological innovations on an ongoing basis.
For further information about SERSA, please go to: www.sersa.fr
Mr Philip Jolly - Press Office Manager
UBIFRANCE Press Office in London
SW1Y 4SP - UK
Tel: +44 (0) 207 024 3640
View other press releases at :www.ubifrance.com/uk
Note to Editors
Copyright — The UBIFRANCE Press Office in London is waiving its copyright on the content included in this press release, which means that recipients are free to reproduce, modify and circulate it if they wish to do so and as far as copyright law is concerned. If a given publication such as a trade magazine (to which the Press Office subscribes) goes ahead and publishes an article on the basis of this press release, we would like to be informed so as to retrieve the published material, and so as to be able to send it to our client company/entity in France (i.e. the company/entity that provided us with the information contained in the press release in the first place). We keep a printed copy of the published material in the relevant file in our office, and a second copy may infrequently be kept in a press-book that may be shown to potential clients when they visit the Press Office. Other than that, a single scanned copy is sent electronically to the client/entity in France (or, more rarely, a single printed copy is sent by post). This is important to us and to our clients. By reproducing material/content that the Press Office sends to a given publication, the recipient (i.e. the publisher and/or editor) is deemed to have agreed to the limited and legitimate use of the published material — in return and in due course — by the Press Office, as described above. If the recipient of this press release objects to the potential limited re-use of his (her) published material by the Press Office (as outlined above) in the name of his (her) copyright, the said recipient should inform the Press Office as soon as possible, and the director of the press bureau will contact the publication concerned by return of email (email@example.com), which will be followed up with a telephone call and/or a letter in order to try to find a compromise that would be acceptable to both parties. The Press Office seeks to comply fully and actively with copyright law in all its aspects within the United Kingdom and as per European Union laws and regulations.
Embedded images — For journalists and editors who need the pictures embedded in one of our press releases, it is very easy to retrieve them. What you need to do is as follows: within the body of the press release, left-click on the picture; this should magnify the image to a size that is directly usable; then, right-click on the magnified picture and choose the ’Save As’ function; finally, save the magnified image as a JPEG file on the hard disk of your computer, giving it the name that you wish to use in connection with the story concerned. If you have any problems with this procedure, do not hesitate to give us a ring. It is always possible for the Press Office to send you JPEG pictures as attachments in an email upon request. Thank you.
Reader responses — Please advise us of publication of this press release and continue to send reader responses to the Press Office. This is the only way we can ensure the follow-up is done efficiently.
Audiovisual content, Multimedia
Libcast of France will be showcasing its Online Video Platform at BETT 2015 in London, in January. The specialist company’s innovative and versatile solution enables users to host, manage and broadcast lectures live or in streaming mode. With 200,000 users, Libcast’s technology has already been chosen by many universities and schools, including leading colleges in France and Norway.
Libcast offers its customers the ability to easily publish any type of audio/video files, pictures and documents to the web, smartphones, tablets, computers, and connected TVs.
Libcast’s Online Video Platform has a range of features that ensure optimal indexation, customization, monetization and analytics to engage the client entity’s audiences and assist it in deploying a successful digital strategy.
Users may expand the platform’s capabilities in order to improve their experience with extensions such as Web TV, pedagogical blogs and plug-ins for education (Moodle, Blackboard, Fronter, Dokeos, etc.).
Business schools, such as HEC Paris, Grenoble Management School and Bordeaux III University, have been choosing the Libcast platform, attracted more particularly by the platform’s scalability. Besides, the Libcast platform offers personalized support within a close partnership with the client entity, so as to better help it carry out a range of projects. These projects include Web TV or limited-access video portals dedicated to the broadcasting of lectures (such as Massive Online Open Courses, or MOOCs).
In the past year, the Libcast platform has attracted a wide international audience. In Norway, Telemark University College (TUC) is among its users. TUC is the fourth largest university college in Norway with 6,500 students. It has four campuses and is based around the Porsgrunn site, in Southern Norway.
TUC uses a broad range of video-based content and was already equipped with video-recording/video-screening equipment. The Norwegian university was looking for an easy-to-use online solution that would be ergonomic and intuitive, enabling users to host, encode and manage video content without difficulty. The chosen solution should also make it possible to subsequently broadcast the video content on internal lecture-related blogs and across TUC’s iTunesU platforms afterwards.
TUC opted for Libcast’s solution after trying it out during the BETT trade show in London (UK) in January 2013, and after a European competitive bidding process that resulted in the specialist French company winning the contract.
TUC chose Libcast for a range of reasons. First of all, Libcast offers a turnkey solution that includes software, support and infrastructure. Also, the Libcast interface is integrated within an SI interface, and the French company’s software application is 100% online.
Furthermore, Libcast has developed an encoding engine that can process all video/audio content, as well as images and documents. Besides, Libcast’s solution features an integrated RichMedia studio as part of the application, enabling the association of video contents with presentations and documents. And the addition of subtitles, chapter headings, etc. can be done easily, in a very intuitive way, which is another advantage.
Libcast has made sure that video formats are suitable and compatible for broadcasting on every screen. And the Libcast solution comes complete with accurate, graphic measurement tools.
Finally, Libcast offers various other benefits, such as the ability to widen the scope of content broadcasting through new portals over time, or unlimited broadcasting traffic (in order to ensure effective control of the budget dedicated to the project).
Thanks to all these versatile and innovative features, the Libcast platform was chosen by Telemark University College of Norway, as it has been by other players in industry and academia in various countries.
Libcast’s freemium business model adds to the strength of its offering, since 3Gb worth of storage is made available to users, free of charge, to host their videos as soon as they have signed up for an account (and without any time constraint attached to the facility).
Libcast has been attending the BETT trade show, in London, for three years, since the trade fair represents a powerful forum for international development and technological innovation, allowing exhibitors to meet the major players in education and new technologies. The company will be at BETT 2015, in January of this year (Stand C.98).
Created in 2006, Libcast is a French-based company specialising in the online hosting of video content and already has 200,000 regular users who work in industry (including video-content producers) or in academia (including students and teachers). Libcast is headquartered in Bordeaux, in the South-West of France.
The company will attend the BETT trade show at EXCEL (Stand C.98, on the French Pavilion), in London (UK), between 21 and 24 January 2015.
You can test and access all Libcast features here: https://www.libcast.com
For further information about the company, please go to: www.libcast.com
For further information, please contact :
Philip Jolly, Manager of the Press Office
UBIFRANCE Press Office in London
SW1Y 4SP – UK - Tel: +44 (0) 207 024 3640
Reference to quote: CP 39 63
This leading international event, focused on innovative transport equipment, will be held concurrently with SITL and Transport Logistics Europe from 31 March to 2 April 2015, in Paris (France).
Transport Next Generation will take place from 31 March to 2 April 2015 in conjunction with SITL Paris 2015 and Intralogistics Europe. The trade shows will be held in Hall 7.2 of the Paris Porte de Versailles Exhibition Centre, to the southeast of central Paris.
Alain Bagnaud, Director of Reed Exhibitions Transport & Logistics, organisers of SITL Paris 2015, gives his thoughts on the launch of Transport Next Generation, the new event to be launched in conjunction with the trade fair, and his expectations as to what it will bring to the transport sector and the logistics industry.
How would you describe the positioning of Transport Next Generation? What is distinctive about it, and what added value does it bring to the industry?
The aim of Transport Next Generation is to be an international event that responds to the expectations of supply-chain directors in industry and retailing.
This new exhibition brings together, in a single space, innovative multimodal transport equipment that works to achieve the most effective transport performance for industry and retailers. As such, Transport Next Generation addresses the link between shipper and transporter. Fundamentally multimodal, it touches the five main transport segments – maritime, rail, river, road, and combined transport (both urban and temperature controlled).
The programme for Transport Next Generation is based around a Steering Committee which, besides SITL’s usual partners, also has the support of the Fédération Française de la Carrosserie (FFC), the Association Française du Gaz Naturel pour Véhicules (AFGNV) and the Industrial Vehicle Rental trade council, led by Transport et Logistique de France (TLF).
What solutions does Transport Next Generation provide?
The common element of all the equipment exhibited at Transport Next Generation is the changing organisation and planning of transportation, as well as the emergence of a link between the shipper and the transporter. This results in multiple new challenges and new transport requirements, including reduction in travel distances; improved productivity of equipment and personnel; safety and security of goods and personnel; evolving regulation; environmental protection; development of e-commerce and urban deliveries; and optimisation of loads, etc.
How does Transport Next Generation integrate into SITL Paris 2015 and Intralogistics Europe 2015?
Transport Next Generation extends and completes our expertise across all transport, logistics and supply-chain activities. It is in complete synergy with SITL Paris 2015, which brings together all transport and logistics services, and Intralogistics Europe 2015, which covers handling equipment at all levels of the supply chain.
For its part, Transport Next Generation provides innovative transport-equipment solutions. It will have its own dedicated space with unique signage and decoration to attract visitors. It will have its own programme of seven conferences and also its own Innovation Award which, reflecting the initial concept, is open to ‘equipment solutions that are immediately operational for shippers or transporters to add value and optimise the services of transporters in light of competition’. Therefore, between them, the three trade shows cover the full market range and expectations of purchasers.
How do you see Transport Next Generation developing in the future?
In 2015, Transport Next Generation will be located in a space that hosts around 30 exhibitors. Taking into account the real interest already expressed in this year’s event, as of 2016, Transport Next Generation will become a separate exhibition with its own area, its own community of exhibitors, and a specifically targeted visitor base.
Our ambition is to attract transport buyers and shipping specifiers from all industry and retail sectors. In line with SITL and Intralogistics, this new event will, in due course, be rolled out internationally, as is the case with all the exhibitions we create and develop.
About Reed Expositions
Reed Expositions is the French subsidiary of Reed Exhibitions, the world’s leading event organiser. Reed Expositions organises over 50 trade shows per year in France across a range of industries including the environment sector, marketing and communications, and transport and logistics.
Reed Expositions will be organising Transport Next Generation 2015, a new event that will run concurrently with SITL Paris 2015 as well as Intralogistics Europe 2015. All three events will take place from 31 March to 2 April 2015 in Hall 7.2 of the Paris Porte de Versailles Exhibition Centre, to the southeast of central Paris (France).
For further information about the various trade shows, please go to: http://www.sitl.eu
For further information about Reed Expositions, please go to: http://www.reedexpo.fr
For further information, please contact :
Ms Kate Riley - Press Officer - UBIFRANCE Press Office in London
SW1Y 4SP – UK - Tel: +44 (0) 207 024 3640 - firstname.lastname@example.org
Fayssal Majid, IT project manager at UBIFRANCE, explains, “Smartphones will be the new platform for all companies. Companies will need to have a mobile application as well as a website in order to attract customers and maintain market share.” By 2020, the number of smartphone subscriptions is expected to more than double to 6.1 billion – almost the size of today’s global population of 6.7 billion. The IT sector is no longer a novelty market: companies of all sizes and in all sectors must integrate digital services into their offering or risk losing business.
France’s Silver Economy is turning into a precious commodity, growing at 4% over the past few years and projected to create 300,000 jobs by 2020. France’s high-value Silver Economy (i.e. the sector of the economy that comprises the production and sale of goods and services for consumers who are over the age of 65) is expected to grow healthily, providing an abundant market for French and foreign-owned businesses. However, the most striking element of this market is that it has nothing to do with metals…
Silver Economy is a term that refers to the segment of the economy that produces and distributes goods and services for consumers over the age of 65, who require products and services tailored to their specific tastes and needs, from accommodation to health and leisure.
According to demographic projections, 23 million French people — the equivalent to one third of the population — will be over 65 by 2030. Many other European and Western countries are experiencing similar developments in their demographics and their retirees are often looking for very specific communities across the continents that they can move into. Furthermore, wealthy retirees from countries in the Far East are also looking for lifestyles with a certain quality that they may not be able to find so readily back home.
Amina Sambou, Project Manager for the Silver Economy at UBIFRANCE, is confident that France can excel in servicing the domestic and foreign market. She says, “In France, we have a focus on health and quality of life, which has already created a market with a strong infrastructure for retirees who are interested in these areas.” Therefore, it is not a surprise that French companies are experiencing interest from consumers in countries such as Japan, South Korea and China who, according to Ms. Sambou, are “interested in the French way of ageing”.
New French companies are already popping up in anticipation of vast opportunities in this field, in the next decade. Silver Valley is France’s answer to California’s Silicon Valley, combining advanced technology and a privileged location in order to create a future for the Silver Economy. Situated less than 10 kilometres from Paris, this cluster of French businesses will create a nexus for innovation in all respects – research facilities for innovative partners, a business park for product- and service-oriented businesses, and attractive real estate for retirees.
Demographics, such as longer life expectancy, a decrease in the birth rate, and the retirement of the ‘baby boomer’ generation are certainly reasons why the market segments relating to the over-65s will become more relevant for all businesses in the next decade. However, this is not the only reason why businesses need to stay ahead of the curve: senior citizens in France represent 43% of the population’s income, 60% of real estate, and 72% of financial investments. Therefore, it is not just the size of the market, but also its focus on high-value products that make it a priority for all business strategists. And, precisely, the structures and services put in place in France in this respect are unparalleled.
Six French regions have been chosen to lead the Silver Economy in France, with each one setting up its own specialist cluster or programme, similar to Silver Valley. A good example is Toulouse’s So Toulouse campaign. The fourth largest city in France has recently been praised as being recession proof – a beacon of private-sector growth in France over the last decade. Part of the success of this city and its surrounding region has been its focus on education and technological innovation. This has translated into smart services for pensioners, including smart homes, e-health services, and a hospital dedicated solely to the elderly. Also, the region’s status as the second most popular agri-food region in France does not hurt its already impressive pitch.
So far, it seems that a large part of French know-how is linked to elements rooted in France itself. However, much of the French advantage is exportable, and French-based companies have been finding success in events such as last June’s Silver Economy Connection in Atlanta (USA).
Sandrine Sauvage-Mack, Senior Trade Advisor at UBIFRANCE, recounts how La Valeriane, a diversified group, was awarded two pilot programmes with two large organisations specialising in homecare and other services to the over-65s: “After a great first impression with Leading Age, the American Federation for Ageing Populations, they were certain to add more pilots and clinical trials with American universities and research centres.”
UBIFRANCE, France’s export-support agency, will continue to promote French-based companies at events dedicated to France’s Silver Economy, in France and in other countries.
For further information about French exporting companies, please go to: http://www.ubifrance.com/french-exporters-directory/search.aspx
avril 25, 2012
UBIFRANCE, the French agency for international business developement, comes under the aegis of France's Ministry for the Economy, Industry & Employment. UBIFRANCE lies at the heart of France's public-sector export support framework.