With 77 new companies setting up across the region in 2013 and 1,825 jobs to be created in the next three years, ADERLY, the development agency for Lyon and its surrounding area, has exceeded its goals: indeed, in 2013, the economy of the Lyon region performed better than in previous years, despite particularly tough competition and a strained economic climate across much of France and the Eurozone.
The year 2013 saw a sharp slowdown in foreign direct investment (FDI) in France, confirmed by numerous economic indicators and international reports: in 2013, FDI, in France, fell to $5.7 billion, in value, down 77% on 2012, according to early estimates by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
Lyon did not entirely escape the recession, which affected several projects handled by ADERLY. This can be seen in certain key indicators in the report. Two strong trends were noted: the smaller size of projects and the growing presence of investors closer to home. Out of the 77 new company set-ups, 55% were backed by foreign capital, compared with 65% in previous years.
Among the foreign investors, ADERLY noted lower investment flows coming from the USA, but higher levels of investment originating in neighbouring countries — Belgium and Switzerland, in particular, with eight and four projects respectively. Levels of Asian investment remained stable.
In this context, Lyon was able to maintain strong results in terms of attractiveness:
Lyon used its strengths in specialized areas in order to focus its prospecting activity on sectors of excellence, on projects with high value in terms of innovation, and on the advanced-services sector. The 77 new projects already mentioned include 30 in the green-tech sector — an area that is a stated priority for local authorities — the setting-up of 10 R&D centres and the launch of 27 decision-making centres.
In 2013, Lyon’s strong fundamentals helped offset a weak national economic environment, which has been decried publicly by 50 large foreign-based investors with business interests and operations within France. [See article published in French business daily Les Echos in December 2013 under the headline: 50 entreprises étrangères installées en France tirent la sonnette d’alarme, i.e. 50 foreign companies with a presence in France sound the alarm.]
Lyon’s location, its vibrant economy and, especially, its leading position in key sectors and major urban-renewal projects have helped make the metropolitan area and its region a preferred alternative to Paris. The local dynamics can also be seen in the volume of real-estate uptake for business premises in the Greater Lyon area in 2013, and in local development projects recently announced by major companies already present in the region, such as Sanofi and Manitowoc.
ONLYLYON is a communication initiative that was launched in 2007 in order to promote a variety of aspects of the city of Lyon (France’s second biggest city) to an international audience. Lyon is the first city in France to have its own territorial marketing strategy, and the only city in the country whose initiative, in this respect, is backed by a group of almost 20 internationally renowned institutional and economic partners.
The ONLYLYON marketing strategy aims to promote the metropolitan area of Lyon and its region as a European beacon of economic excellence, capitalizing on the region’s proven leadership in sectors such as the environment, health, technology, textiles and urban transport. ONLYLYON also seeks to underline the region’s cultural attractions across sectors including heritage, history, gastronomy and tourism.
ADERLY is the economic development agency for the Lyon area and is a key member of the group of partner-agencies supporting the ONLYLYON initiative.
For further information, please go to: www.onlylyon.org
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Ms Kate RILEY - Press Officer
UBIFRANCE Press Office in London
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