Cover of higher education & research in France, facts and figures

📄 Sources:MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
ACOSS-URSSAF.

 Coverage:Whole of France.

The data presented here are estimates based on the annual survey on resources devoted to R&D by businesses in 2013. The list of YICs exempt from social security charges under the YIC scheme was provided by the ACOSS. The amount of exemptions granted to YICs in 2013 is available in an ACOSS publication (Exemptions continue to fall in 2013, Acosstat No. 204, December 2014). Due to the availability of a new database and a change in the estimate method, the intramural expenditure on R&D by young innovative companies in 2013 cannot be compared to that of 2012.

The status of young innovative company (YIC) was established in the 2004 Finance Law. Businesses must fulfil 5 criteria to be granted this status: they must be an SME (i.e. employ fewer than 250 people and have turnover of less than €50 million or a balance sheet total of less than €43 million); they must have been operating for less than eight years; their R&D expenditure must account for at least 15% of their tax-deductible expenses for each financial year; they must be autonomous for tax purposes; and they must be a genuinely new business.

Businesses with YIC status enjoy various benefits, including: exemptions from employers’ social security contributions, particularly for researchers, technicians and R&D project managers; paying no corporation tax for three years and at half the normal rate for the following two years; and being totally exempt from France’s annual flat-rate tax (IFA) for as long as they retain their YIC status.

The scheme was reformed under the 2011 Finance Law to reduce the exemptions granted to YICs, including: a degression in tax reductions from companies’ fifth year of business; and the introduction of an upper limit on exemptions per business and another on exemptions per employee set at 4.5 times the national minimum wage (SMIC).

The research branch is the branch of economic activity benefiting from R&D work, described here in 32 items, put together using the French classification of activities revised in 2008 (NAF Rev. 2). The 'Specialised scientific and technical activities' branch mainly covers research and development activities and engineering services.

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41 young innovative companies

This page has been updated. Read 40. young innovative companies in Higher education & research in France, facts and figures 10th edition - June 2017

'Young innovative company’ (YIC) status was introduced to encourage people to set up and expand SMEs that carry out R&D. In 2013, their intramural R&D expenditure totalled €830 million and was focused primarily within the service sector.

When it was first introduced in 2004, ‘young innovative company’ (YIC) status helped 1,300 businesses. According to the Central Agency for Social Security Funds (ACOSS), in 2013, 3,080 businesses benefited from €112 million in exemptions under this scheme. This figure rose by 23.6% in 2013 following significant negative adjustments made in 2012. YICs spent €830 million on R&D in 2013 and employed 10,800 full-time equivalent (FTE) R&D personnel.

Due to the nature of the status (see methodology section), YICs are small businesses: nine out of ten YICs employ fewer than 20 people. As a result, it is interesting to compare YICs with companies that employ fewer than 20 people and carry out R&D.

On average, YICs spend more on intramural R&D than companies with fewer than 20 employees, active in R&D. Half of YICs spend more than €149,000 on intramural R&D, compared to 41% of businesses with fewer than 20 employees active in R&D.

A significant proportion of the personnel employed by YICs were dedicated to R&D. In 2013, YICs devoted on average 3.5 FTE posts to R&D (covering employees with all levels of qualifications), as compared with the 2.4 FTE posts devoted by businesses with fewer than 20 employees carrying out R&D (table 41.01). Those employed by YICs were also more highly qualified. On average, researchers and R&D engineers accounted for 2.6 FTE posts at YICs, in comparison with 1.6 at businesses with fewer than 20 employees. Researchers and R&D engineers represented on average 57% of the total YIC workforce, compared to 40% in businesses with fewer than 20 employees, active in R&D.

YICs were more likely to collaborate with other institutions involved in carrying out R&D: 40% of them outsourced R&D to dedicated State research institutions or other businesses, as compared with only 32% of businesses with fewer than 20 employees.

Government funding accounted for the majority of funds paid to YICs for their R&D (excluding tax incentives such as the YIC scheme or the R&D tax credit). In 2013, they received €168 million in government funding for their R&D. This accounted for 17% of their total R&D expenditure (including the procurement of R&D from other businesses or dedicated state research institutions), as compared with 12% for businesses with fewer than 20 employees (table 41.02). 86% of government funding paid to YICs took the form of incentive credits from government departments and state institutions. By contrast, both YICs and businesses with fewer than 20 employees that carried out R&D received little funding relating to defence or big technology programmes. In addition to government funding, YICs also received €22 million for their R&D activities from businesses based in France (chart 41.03). This only accounted for 2% of their total R&D expenditure, compared with 7% for businesses with fewer than 20 employees, active in R&D.

As with all businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the R&D carried out by YICs related primarily to service activities. In 2013, the top three R&D activities of YICs were (in decreasing order of intramural expenditure): ‘Professional, scientific and technical activities’, ‘Computer-related and information service activities’ and ‘Publishing, audiovisual and broadcasting activities’ (chart 41.04). These three areas accounted for 78% of intramural business enterprise expenditure on R&D (BERD) by YICs, compared with 64% spent by businesses with fewer than 20 employees, active in R&D.

 Coverage:Whole of France.

How to cite this paper :

TESTAS Anna. Young innovative companies. In: Higher education & research in France, facts and figures - 50 indicators [online]. KABLA-LANGLOIS Isabelle (dir.). Paris: Ministère de l'Éducation nationale, de l'Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche, 2016. 9th ed. Chapter 41 [Accessed 06/17/2019]. ISBN 978-2-11-151572-7. https://publication.enseignementsup-recherche.gouv.fr/eesr/9EN/EESR9EN_R_41-young_innovative_companies.php

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The data presented here are estimates based on the annual survey on resources devoted to R&D by businesses in 2013. The list of YICs exempt from social security charges under the YIC scheme was provided by the ACOSS. The amount of exemptions granted to YICs in 2013 is available in an ACOSS publication (Exemptions continue to fall in 2013, Acosstat No. 204, December 2014). Due to the availability of a new database and a change in the estimate method, the intramural expenditure on R&D by young innovative companies in 2013 cannot be compared to that of 2012.

The status of young innovative company (YIC) was established in the 2004 Finance Law. Businesses must fulfil 5 criteria to be granted this status: they must be an SME (i.e. employ fewer than 250 people and have turnover of less than €50 million or a balance sheet total of less than €43 million); they must have been operating for less than eight years; their R&D expenditure must account for at least 15% of their tax-deductible expenses for each financial year; they must be autonomous for tax purposes; and they must be a genuinely new business.

Businesses with YIC status enjoy various benefits, including: exemptions from employers’ social security contributions, particularly for researchers, technicians and R&D project managers; paying no corporation tax for three years and at half the normal rate for the following two years; and being totally exempt from France’s annual flat-rate tax (IFA) for as long as they retain their YIC status.

The scheme was reformed under the 2011 Finance Law to reduce the exemptions granted to YICs, including: a degression in tax reductions from companies’ fifth year of business; and the introduction of an upper limit on exemptions per business and another on exemptions per employee set at 4.5 times the national minimum wage (SMIC).

The research branch is the branch of economic activity benefiting from R&D work, described here in 32 items, put together using the French classification of activities revised in 2008 (NAF Rev. 2). The 'Specialised scientific and technical activities' branch mainly covers research and development activities and engineering services.

 

Key figures


Amount of public funding received by young innovative companies
168 M
 
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
Number of business enterprises with the status of Young Innovative Company (YIC)
3,080
 business enterprises
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
Amount of social security and tax exemptions for Young Innovative Companies
112 M
 
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
Intramural R&D expenditure by Young Innovative Companies
830 M
 
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
  See more key figures  
R&D staff in Young Innovative Companies (FTE)
10,800
 people (FTE)
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Coverage: full-time equivalent
Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
Average number of staff in R&D in YICs (FTE)
3.5
 people (FTE)
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Coverage: full-time equivalent
Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES
Average number of staff in R&D in business enterprises with under 20 employees (business enterprises with R&D activity)
2.4
 people (FTE)
2013
Whole of France
 
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Extract from the chapter "41. young innovative companies".

Coverage: full-time equivalent
Source: MENESR-DGESIP/DGRI-SIES

41.01 Attributes of companies by business category in 2013

 
YICs All businesses carrying out R&D in-house, categorised by number of employees at 31 December 2013
Fewer than 20 employees 20-249 employees 250 employees and more All
R&D expenditure Average intramural BERD (in €M) 0.27 0.19 0.82 13.15 1.73
Median intramural BERD (in €M) 0.15 0.11 0.32 1.15 0.20
Proportion of businesses with extramural BERD > 0 (%) 40 32 42 59 38
Average extramural BERD (in €M) 0.06 0.06 0.16 4.42 0.53
R&D personnel Average number of R&D personnel (FTE) 3.5 2.4 8.3 97.2 14.2
Average number of researchers and engineers (FTE) 2.6 1.6 5.3 62.3 9.1
Researcher and R&D engineer / R&D personnel (%) 74 68 64 64 64
R&D intensity Researcher and R&D engineer / Number of personnel (%, headcount) 57 40 11 4 6

 
 Coverage: Whole of France.

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41.02 Funding of intramural BERD by type of business in 2013

 
YICs All businesses carrying out R&D in-house, categorised by number of employees at 31 December 2013
Fewer than 20 employees 20-249 employees 250 employees and more All
Government funding received (€M) 168 260 395 2,070 2,725
Government funding 1 received by type of funding (%)
Defence 1 3 10 63 49
Big technology programmes 0 0 2 22 17
Incentive credits 86 81 78 15 30
Other civil funding 2 12 16 10 92 4
Government funding as a proportion of total R&D expenditure 3 (%) 17 12 6 7 7
 

1 Excluding tax incentives such as exemptions from social security contributions and the R&D tax credit.
2 Funding from local authorities and not-for-profit institutions
3 Total R&D expenditure includes research carried out by businesses in-house and that subcontracted to other organisations.

 Coverage: Whole of France.

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41.03 Funding received by type of business (as %, €M)

YICs
Fewer than 20 employees
20-249 employees
250 employees and more
All
  
Government funding
Funding from abroad
Funding from other businesses based in France
 
 
 Coverage: Whole of France.

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41.04 Branches of research that benefited from intramural BERD in 2013, by type of business

YICs
Fewer than 20 employees
20-249 employees
250 employees and more
All
  
Specialised scientific and technical activities
Computer-related and information service activities
Publishing, audiovisual and broadcasting activities
Manufacture of basic pharmaceutical products and pharmaceutical preparations
Manufacture of air and spacecraft and related machinery
Manufacture of motor vehicles
Manufacture of electronic components and boards, computers and peripheral equipment
Manufacture of instruments and appliances for measuring, testing and navigation; watches and clocks
Manufacture of chemicals and chemical products
Others
 
 

Only the 5 main branches of activity for each business category are presented.

 Coverage: Whole of France.

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Other editions

Etat de l'enseignement supérieur et de la rechercheHigher education & research in France, facts and figures 10th edition - June 2017
40 - young innovative companies - Camille Schweitzer
'Young innovative company’ (YIC) status was introduced to encourage people to set up and expand SMEs that carry out R&D. In 2014, their intramural R&D expenditure totalled €916 million and was focused primarily within the service sector [Consult the following page]
Etat de l'enseignement supérieur et de la rechercheHigher education & research in France, facts and figures 8th edition - November 2015
40 - young innovative companies - Anna Testas
‘Young innovative company’ (YIC) status was introduced to encourage people to set up and expand SMEs that carry out R&D. In 2012, their R&D expenditure totalled €730 million and was focused primarily within the service sector [Consult the following page]

Translation

 Etat de l'enseignement supérieur et de la rechercheL'état de l'Enseignement supérieur et de la Recherche en France n°9 - Juin 2016
41 - les jeunes entreprises innovantes - Anna Testas
Le statut de jeune entreprise innovante (JEI) a été créé pour favoriser la création et le développement des PME qui conduisent des travaux de R&D. En 2013, leurs dépenses intérieures de R&D s’élèvent à 830 millions d’euros et se concentrent essentiellement dans des branches de services [Consult the following page in french]


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