France - Country Commercial Guide
Computers and Peripherals

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2019-10-13


  2015 2016 (Estimated) 2017 (Estimated) 2018 (Estimated)
Total Local Production 51,805 52,948 55,886 63,021
Total Exports 10,609 10,843 11,445 12,906
Total Imports 15,237 15,570 16,434 18,532
Imports from the US 8,227 8,425 8,892 10,028
Total Market Size 56,433 57,675 60,875 68,647
Exchange Rate 1 Euro USD 1.1095 USD 1.1069 USD 1.1297 USD 1.230

(total market size = (total local production + imports) - exports)
(Figures in USD millions; * indicates unofficial estimates.
Year to year figures adjusted for varying exchange rate.)
Total Market Size = (Total Local Production + Total Imports) – (Total Exports)

The Market Place for Computer Services & Computer Software
Valued at $60.91 billion (€53.9 billion) in 2017, France’s market for computer software and services, which grew by 3.4% in 2017, is the third largest in Europe.  The market growth rate for 2018 is expected to be around 3.6%, a rate of growth which the sector has not seen since 2011. Two thousand of the firms in this sector produce 80% of the revenues.  In terms of employment, there are currently over 26,800 French firms employing more than 447,000 employees specializing in software and services. From 2016 to 2017, the market added 19,000 jobs.
The market is divided among the three following activities: Consulting & Services (72%); Software publishing (18.5%); and Technology Consulting Services (9.5%).  In France, there are ten top information technology service firms that dominate the French market: Capgemini, ATOS, IBM, Sopra Steria, Orange, Accenture, CGI, Hewlett Packard, GFI and Econocom. In the computer services sector, the implementation of software as a Service (SaaS) products has largely influenced market growth. The market for these products is $2.49 billion (€2.2 billion) as of 2017 and is expected to grow to $3.32 billion (€2.7 billion) in 2018.  In the software publishing sector, the combined revenue of French companies as of 2017, amounts to roughly $8.93 billion (€7.9 billion).  Since 2005, top companies in the software publishing sector have seen increased diversification and decreasing revenues in the market. From 2006 to 2016, the weight in revenue of the top 10 French companies has decreased from 75% to 66%.
This trend of decreasing company weight in terms of total market revenue is evident throughout the Software & Services market, which has become increasingly heterogeneous in the past several years, especially with the entrance of newcomers from various sectors: telecommunications, temp agencies, computer hardware firms, defense firms, and network integrators. Within the market, the most rapid growth has occurred in the cloud market, as interested firms expand into Europe and enlarge their number of data centers. The cloud market has recently seen the entrance of companies such as Amazon, which recently brought its first local cloud infrastructure to France, and that of Orange, known as “Flexible Engine.” The cloud computing market in France, which grew by 21% between 2016 and 2017, is a dynamically structured high growth sector worth over $9.6 billion (8.5 billion). This market is expected to continue growing rapidly in the future because of increased demand, which is largely driven by the distribution, e-commerce, industry, and service sectors. As cloud usage, whether public, private, or hybrid, is expanding in the French marketplace, concern over the safety of personal data is also growing. The implication is two-fold. It presents an opportunity for the cloud market to offer a more secure method for data storage, especially for SMEs (whose data storage may be less secure than larger enterprises). However, it also presents a challenge because companies will have to adjust to new regulations concerning data – with large financial repercussions if they fail doing so.
As of May 25, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which regulates the protection of EU personal data, has imposed specific obligations on processors, who may be held liable in the event of data breaches. This new regulation has been imposed throughout the EU and EEA region and applies to all European Union citizens, regardless of whether the business is based there. The GDPR will have sweeping consequences for businesses, even in the areas of marketing and especially customer engagement. Failure to comply with these new regulations can result in fines of up to 4% of a company’s global revenues or $24,6 million (€20 million), whichever option is greater. To ensure compliance to the GDRP, it is suggested that companies appoint a data protection officer (DPO) or data controller. Even smaller businesses or those not processing large volumes of personal data, should at least appoint a primary point of contact for the protection of this data, whether that person is internal or the role is outsourced.

Leading Sub-Sectors

  • Big Data
  • Cloud Computing (i.e. SaaS solutions)
  • Mobility
  • Cybersecurity Solutions
  • E-Commerce
  • Outsourcing / BPO
  • Social business
  • “Apps” software applications in smart phones
  • Facilities management and Third-Party Maintenance of Applications (TMA)
  • Facilities management of infrastructures
  • Externalized R&D
  • Integration of Information Processing Systems
  • Integration of smart phones and tablets into the existing IT infrastructure
  • Integration of social networks into the sales/marketing model
  • E-health/Tele-Health
  • Smart Grid/Smart Metering   

In the market as a whole, researchers expect for suppliers to see growth in the following areas: document and process digitization; digital user services; data management and processing; information system sharing, and especially cloud computing. Increasingly widespread and affordable high-speed Internet (4G) access and wireless connectability will maintain demand for systems integration, especially with regards to omnichannel commerce solutions and e-commerce in general, which benefits from its lower costs and increased mobile accessibility.
While market growth of consumer software and services hovered around 3% from 2016 to 2017, the cloud market expanded at a rate of about 21%. In fact, the public cloud market, one of its fastest growing subsectors, grew much faster - by about 49% over the same period. The cloud (and especially the public cloud) market is becoming an increasingly attractive commercial opportunity.  As a whole, high growth in the cloud market represents an opportunity for businesses investment, entry and expansion especially in France’s current market climate.
 In France, the growing need for data storage and security for personal data has been further spurred by recent cyber-security concerns and GDPR implementation. In order to conform to RGDP regulation, spending reached $757.1 million (€670 million) in 2017 and is projected to reach almost $1.23 billion (€1 billion) in 2018. While these developments present an opportunity for cloud providers to provide solutions and respond to increased demand, it is also important to keep in mind that these changes will have an large impact on the approach of cloud providers and will necessitate an updated approach by those affected by new regulations.

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