Companies that chose France: Hashtag MO Holdings
The entrepreneur Christine Govindsamy turned to Business France to help her settle her business in France. She found the support and guidelines she needed to be able to understand the French business ecosystem.
Tell us more about you and your company, Genesis Projects?
I am Christine Govindsamy the founder and CEO of Hashtag MO Holdings.
It is a business that was initially created in South Africa: an experiential technology company with an intention to build tech products that solves issues in traditional industries and we will be launching in the media publication industry.
The intention to move to Europe is purely out of consumer demand and traction for the product need.
Why did you choose France to develop your business?
We have done a comprehensive internationalisation report on which countries to consider setting up an international footprint.
Once this research effort was complete two countries were shortlisted.
That being the UK and France.
We then further conducted an opportunities analysis based on tech startups and I found that the opportunities and benefits that existed in the tech ecosystem in France with quite a deep emphasis on Paris was unmatched and offered a great deal of additional long term opportunities that we could explore as we scale.
France is set up for new tech companies and ticked all of the boxes.
The tech ecosystem in Paris is also thriving and it’s the centre hub of Europe right now, France is definitely the leader in the EU.
That is the reason we chose France.
What kind of support did you receive from Business France in your plan to set up in France?
As soon as I reached out to Business France I was assisted from every step in terms of vetting our Business Plan, understanding what our requirements were, assisting us in understanding the different kinds of businesses we can set up in France, the ones that are most suitable to our organisation and when I had questions these were directly answered.
Business France connected me with the regional representative Choose Paris region and they also played a fundamental role in putting me in touch with the right intermediaries, assisting with visa process (I did a lot of the due diligence myself) but whenever I got stuck Choose Paris Region and BF was there to assist and that helped tremendously.
When I got to Paris, we had meetings with Choose Paris Region and remained in close communication.
Recommendations were made by Business France and Choose Paris Region in order to guide me and to integrate into the ecosystem, very helpful insights.
Which advice would you give to a company considering setting up in France/abroad?
For me, it’s imperative a business owner has to be really serious about internationalisation if they want their company to be a success.
Having a business in itself is a challenge and in or order to minimise the number of trials choose which tasks you want to spend time on.
Do not underestimate the attention to detail required: local authorities; trying to source funding and the time it takes to fully understand and submit a successful application for a grant.
It is also imperative to know and understand that you need to learn the language and integrate into the culture of the country as your employees, suppliers and clients are French.
Christine Govindsamy, Hashtag MO Holdings.
Do not hesitate to contact us if you are thinking of setting up a business in France.
Other articles about Invest in France