Reading "France has a head start on Web3

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Yesterday, Singapore's (50 million users) announced its intention to set up its European headquarters in Paris. Its number two, Éric Anziani, explains why.

The Big Whale: Why is the French market interesting for you?

Éric Anziani: Several studies have recently shown that the French are not the biggest users of cryptos. Less than 10% of them have already bought one, whereas in some countries it's much more. The adoption rate can be as high as 15, 20 or even 30%! Given the French appetite for new technologies, that gives you an idea of the room for improvement.

France is also a country with a lot of talent, with very well-trained engineers, good business schools and quality universities. All this contributes to the fact that France is attractive to Web3 players.

What do you think of the government's policy on Web3?

This is certainly one of the main reasons why we chose Paris for our European headquarters. We felt there was a real political will to support the global Web3 players. For the past few months, we've had a very constructive relationship with the regulators, the Budget and Digital Ministries, but also the Élysée (read our exclusive interview with Emmanuel Macron).

Like Singapore, France was a pioneer in the sector by setting up a specific regime for cryptos very early on (since 2019, ed. note). Generally speaking, public players have a better understanding of the subject thanks to their experience. France has a head start on Web3.

Is the European market crucial to you?

It's our biggest market after North America, and ahead of Asia. We are working with several European regulators and the arrival of MiCA regulations will enable us to expand more rapidly.

Are you applying for PSAN authorisation?

For the moment we only have PSAN (prestataire de services sur actifs numériques) registration in France, which allows us to address the French market specifically.

Accreditation, which is the next step, is more demanding and is going to be extended Europe-wide thanks to MiCA from 2024. I understand that there are several applications currently being assessed on the desk of the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) and I hope for France that this is something that will develop here (no authorisation has yet been issued, editor's note).

You have announced a €150 million investment in France, where will the funds be directed?

Of course to our future European headquarters. We're going to be recruiting people in Paris! And we're also going to invest at least €50 million in the French Web3 ecosystem and its start-ups in particular.

>> Read our article: makes Paris its European headquarters

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