Hi, honey, I'm home! And with the changing leaves come a new project.
- You want to penetrate the European market, so you'll need a sense of the atmosphere and potentially useful partners.
- You're looking for promising French firms to invest in and scale.
- You want to broaden your sense of trends that may go global - and not just from home turf.
- It's easier to secure investors cash in the anglo world, as French ones draw from a smaller pool and are generally more risk averse. This means dev moves faster in the US or UK - and with speedy development often comes fast adoption.
- Most tech-forward countries prioritize learning English, which makes geeky English-language applications more adoptable elsewhere.
- Anglos have no problem self-promoting. Here, it's more or less bad taste unless you're reeeal subtle about it.
- Anglos in general tend to have a more open-source attitude about their projects, which enables achievement to spread while improving. Failure isn't the end, and it's no reason to stop; it's a learning opportunity. That's not quite the case in France. This is simply cultural.
A few notable French inventions include Minitel, a World Wide Web precursor that was wildly successful here but limited to France. Then there's Vente Privée, a retail community that offered those in the know discounts on high-end brands. (Founded 2001. Americans have since conquered this market with offerings like Shop It To Me and others, but it was the first and remains #1 in European private sales.)
More recently, there's DisMoiOù ("tell me where"), a mobile geolocation resto reviews app that predates Foursquare by three months. Most French geeks now use Foursquare, which is too bad: in France DisMoiOù is faster and more likely to have the obscure locale you're trying to check into. Plus it's in French, incorporates features of Yelp (aggregated reviews) and has a stable means of making money via real-time incentives from businesses to users.
Feedback welcome, as always. I'll see you there.