Fintech: dozens of French unicorns, but little pony internationally

The year 2021 will undoubtedly have been a good period for fundraising for certain French startups, categorized as fintech. Since September, not a week without one of them announcing mega fundraisers that raise their valuations, and transform them into unicorns, these unlisted companies valued at more than a billion euros.

France Fintech ensures that investments in the sector reached 762.9 million euros in the second half of 2021 (not counting the last fundraising of Qonto, which values ​​the company at 4,000 million dollars). This represents an increase of 104% compared to the second half of 2020.

The cause ? There is too much money to invest. “I am regularly offered to take the leadership of a startup in the process of raising 10 or 20 million dollars,” said at the beginning of the week a retired French start-up who lives in California. “But the ideas at the core of these companies are flawed at best, few experienced people are interested in them. It’s just proof that money is everywhere, that there are more investors than good ideas.

A global phenomenon affecting France

According to BCG, investments in fintechs were up 173% in the third quarter of 2021 compared to the previous year. Fundraising of more than $ 100 million is contributing enormously to this explosion. And this global phenomenon also affects France.

This is one of the reasons why several French fintechs have surpassed the 1 billion mark in valuation by just over a quarter.

The Montpellier Swile returned to its Softbank capital during a new record collection of 175 million euros in mid-October. And Lydia, who specializes in mobile payments, just raised $ 103 million.

And for all of these examples, it’s foreign funds that have led the big rounds. A reinforcement of new money that, according to France Fintech, increased the average amount raised. It reached 31.8 million euros in the second half of 2021, compared to 21.7 million in the first six months of the year.

Still, the valuation of French fintech can hardly be compared to that of its international competitors.

According to Visual Capitalist, the highest-cap unicorns in the fintech industry are Stripe ($ 95 billion valuation), Klarna ($ 45.6 billion valuation), Revolut ($ 33 ​​billion valuation), or in orders. lower magnitude Brex ($ 12.3 million). billions of valuation). That’s three times more than Qonto’s valuation.

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