Business Angels are men and women who invest their own money in various entrepreneurial projects. The editors have decided to give you the Top 14 of these entrepreneurial enthusiasts who highlight the young shoots of tomorrow.
Xavier Niel, the founder of the free mobile phone network, is an excellent Business Angel. Since 2009, the entrepreneur has invested EUR 35 million in equity in 230 different projects. The company Fundme presents him as the first French Business Angel according to a ranking published in April. Its originality comes from the diversity of the projects it supports. In 2010, together with Jérémie Berrebi, he founded the investment fund Kima Ventures, which aims to finance the performance of start-ups. At the same time, together with Mathieu Pigasse and Pierre Bergé, he bought the daily newspaper Le Monde, which was then in financial difficulties.
F station was created by Xavier Niel and directed by Roxanne Varza. It is a startup campus, inaugurated on June 29, 2017, spread over 34,000 square meters and located in the Halle Freyssinet, in Paris.
Founder of Cash Store and Malinea, which have since been sold to eBuyClub and vente-privee.com, Catherine Barba has not left the world of entrepreneurship. She believes in the potential of start-ups and is not afraid to promote them. Last October she made a short program on M6 entitled “Entreprendre C Grandir” in which she presents portraits of entrepreneurs. A season 2 is in preparation and should air in the coming months. She is also part of the 100,000 Entrepreneurs Association, which aims to convey the entrepreneurial spirit to school children. As a Business Angel she finances many start-ups including Leetchi, So Shape, Recommend and Trendsboard. In January 2020, it made an investment in Place2Swap, located in Île-de-France. She is also part of the show’s jury Who wants to be my partner? aired since this year on M6.
After founding Meetic, the famous dating website, in 2002, Marc Simoncini decided to invest in many innovative start-ups. With 12 million euros invested in 23 projects since 2009, the entrepreneur is in third place in the ranking of the most active Business Angels in France, compiled by the company Fundme. In 2010, he founded his own investment fund Jaïna Capital with the aim of helping innovative companies with high potential. Among the start-ups that have received support is Winamax, a famous online poker and sports betting site founded by Patrick Bruel, Alexandre Roos and Christophe Schaming in 2007.
Investment banker and founder of Liautaud & Cie, an advisory and investment company, Martine Liautaud is a very active Business Angel in France. As a member of the Women Business Angels network, she bought the toy brand Mecano in the early 1990s and invested in the construction of photovoltaic power plants in 2009. Very involved in the promotion of female entrepreneurship, in September 2010 she launched the association Women Business Mentoring Initiative (WBMI), which aims to support female entrepreneurs in launching their entrepreneurial project and above all to help them overcome the difficult three-year journey. of efficacy.
Less known than his friends because of his exile in the United States in 2000, Fabrice Grinda nevertheless founded three companies: Aucland.fr, Zingy and OLX. The first, launched in France in 1999, is an online auction site. The other two, founded in the United States, continue to specialize in mobile games and ringtones and online advertising, respectively. Today he has sold them all and dedicates himself to companies all over the world. Since 2009, it has made 170 investments for a total amount of 26 million euros. In 2014 alone, 41 start-ups benefited from the money invested by the entrepreneur.
At the heart of the customer relations and digital strategy of the Iliad group, Angélique Gerard is also the founder of the company Memdis, sold in December 2006. In March 2015, she became the head of the Choiseul 100, a ranking of the hundred future leaders of the French economy! She replaces Emmanuel Macron, who took first place in the 2014 edition. Business Angel has now participated for 3 years in the financing of the company Cook Angels, which offers home delivery of ready-to-eat ingredients. In 2019 she made two investments, one of which together with Chantal Baudron. : OurCo — 1.6 million euros — Digital solution in the form of a social network for free speech at work and Aive — amount undisclosed — Tool for automating personalized video content.
Founder of Fotolia, one of the world’s leading image banks present in 14 countries and with a turnover of 100 million dollars, Oleg Tscheltzoff also has a Business Angel activity. He says he wants to finance projects that he is really in love with, as was the case with the companies 2 Heures Avant, Architurn or Restopolitan. He also invested in Jeff Clavier’s American investment fund. Since 2009, the co-founder of Amen has invested 2.1 million euros in 21 start-up projects, ranking him seventh among the most active French Business Angels according to the Fundme ranking.
The French entrepreneur and founder of Synervia, a financial and strategic consultancy for SMEs, Morgane Rollando is also the treasurer of “Femmes Business Angels”. This association, which brings together about a hundred female entrepreneurs who personally invest in start-ups, remains in fact the leading female Business Angel network in Europe. Since its inception, 80 companies have benefited from the EUR 4.6 million invested. Today, the founder herself is a Business Angel and helps many start-ups, both through support and through equity investments.
Jacques-Antoine Granjon, co-founder of Venteprivee.com, an online event sales site, has supported 19 entrepreneurial projects since 2009 and has invested 1.9 million euros of his personal fortune. In 2011, together with Xavier Niel and Marc Simoncini, he founded the European School of Internet Professions (EEMI), which offers students an unprecedented education in Internet professions and web management. In June 2013, the three entrepreneurs announced the funding of 101 business projects managed by young people under 25, up to 25,000 euros each. Among the winners are the start-ups Snapkin, Tech4Team and Gamping.com.
Former associate director of Jaina Capital, the investment fund of Marc Simoncini, Marie-Christine Levet is now a director of the Public Investment Bank (Bpifrance) and the Iliad group. In particular, the entrepreneur took part in the fundraising of 100,000 euros concluded in the summer of 2012 by the company Carnet de mode, an international online sales platform. It also remains a shareholder of Frenchweb, the magazine for digital professionals. She also ranks 34th in the top 50 French Business Angels compiled by the company Fundme in June 2013.
Serial entrepreneur and co-founder of France Digitale, France FinTech and SISTA
The serial entrepreneur (Leetchi, MangoPay) has invested in more than 30 startups in the sharing economy, crowdfunding and Fintech to date. Among them we find Pumpkin, Tacotax, iVesta, Yuka, Jimmy Fairly or Welcome to the Jungle.
With 9 million euros injected into 18 companies, PriceMinister creator Pierre Kosciusko-Morizet is always at the forefront of investment. He is now co-founder of the Internet Entrepreneurs Investment Fund (ISAI).
Founder of SeLoger.com, Denys Chalumeau has invested 2.4 million euros in eight different companies since 2009. He is now co-founder of, among others, Openoox, a company that reinvents the homepages of internet browsers.
The founder of Smartbox and historical investor of TheFork, Pierre-Edouard Stérin (7 million euros, seven investments)