2022 Survey: What Do French Intermediate-Sized Companies Expect?

Bpifrance Le Lab shared last June the results of its annual survey on mid-sized companies. 52% of them expect an increase in their turnover in 2022.


After optimistic results in 2021, the 2022 survey shows disparate feedbacks from French mid-sized companies, in link with the geopolitical context and inflation.

In France, the «  category, representing the mid-sized companies, was introduced in 2008 by the “modernization of the economy” law. It gathers companies that are not part of SMEs and that have less than 5,000 employees, and a turnover which does not exceed €1.5 billion or a balance sheet total which does not exceed €2 billion. It thus represents the category between SMEs and large enterprises.


Despite a darkening context, French mid-sized companies see life in green

After Covid-19, French companies also encounter a three out of four surveyed mid-sized companies show difficulties in recruiting new talents. Supply tensions, aggravated by the Ukraine war, may also limit the activity for two third  of this category of companies, and most of them expect an increase in energy and non-energy raw materials. In response, three out of four of companies plan to increase their prices to cushion the blow, and one-third want to cut their margins. “In a context of rising production costs, the financial situation of TPEs is logically deteriorating, but starting from a particularly comfortable level”, Philippe Mutricy, Director of Evaluation, Studies and Forecasting at Bpifrance, tempers. 83% of the surveyed companies show concerns about , especially those working in services. Geopolitical conflicts represent another worry as well. However, experts like Philippe Mutricy stay confident in terms of investment, especially green ones. “As access to credit is still considered easy, mid-sized companies’ investments should be dynamic in 2022. Over the next few years, it will be supported by the ecological and energy transition, which a large majority sees as a source of opportunity”. 70% of the surveyed companies thus plan to develop their green investment in the next five years, 42% significantly. But half of them also considers that they need more innovations to succeed in their green transition.


Innovative mid-sized companies are the most internationalized

In the matter of half of French mid-sized companies surveyed expect a rise in their turnover, although differences remain according to sectors, however. Industrial companies seem to be the most optimistic, as well as the most internationalized  ones. On this matter, 44% of French mid-caps have an international activity, and 25% make one out of four of their activity outside France. Innovation shows to have a huge impact as mid-sized companies considered as innovative make 25% of their activity abroad  – it only reaches 8% for companies that are not. Midcaps’ international activities are mainly done in European Union, and 38% with the rest of the world. Statistics on their subsidiaries and external growth in general show similar results, the survey finds: the European Union is the first targeted development area for 78% of midcaps that have external growth ambitions, followed by North America, Africa (both at 14%) and Asia (13%).


Find the whole survey in French here: https://lelab.bpifrance.fr/get_pdf/2902/analyse_enquete_eti_2022_vf_-avec_compression.pdf