Bpifrance takes stock of the commercialization of its fund Bpifrance Entreprises 1

Bpifrance presented on June 24th the results of its first fundraising open to non-professional investors: Bpifrance Entreprises 1. Nearly €95 million were raised by the end of June 2021, three months before the scheduled closing date.

An investment solution accessible to the French

While Private Equity has been reserved to professional investors, the Bpifrance Entreprises 1* is aimed at the general public, with an entry ticket of €5,000, i.e. 10 times more accessible than the usual entry ticket for Private Equity funds, and a shorter investment period of 6 years (extendable by one year) vs 10 years (plus 2 years of potential extension period) for other similar funds. “Bpifrance has given individuals unprecedented access to the intrinsic qualities of a solution previously reserved for professional investors, and to benefit from the selection made by Bpifrance” said Nicolas Dufourcq, Bpifrance's CEO. Almost half of the online investors have subscribed to the minimum ticket of €5000 and with an average age of ~50 years. Most of them were making their first investment in Private Equity.

Even though the product presents a risk of capital loss, the structuration of the BE1 fund offered a balanced market risk, according to Bpifrance teams, thanks to an already constituted and diversified portfolio:

  • 1,500 underlying companies (80% of which are French mid-caps, SMEs and startups),
  • Through 145 underlying funds managed by approximately 80 management companies
  • Subscribed by Bpifrance over a period of more than 10 years between 2005 and 2016.

 

A multi-channel distribution strategy to reach out to the French public

To reach out to the widest audience possible, Bpifrance launched its digital subscription platform, which attracted over 100,000 individual visitors. This successful launch allowed to attract more than €20 million through this direct channel.

In order to reach complementary targets, Bpifrance also set up other business partnerships in collaboration with 123 IM (the fund distributor) in order to diversify its investors base: insurance companies and their related banking networks (Sogecap / Société Générale, Cardif / BNP Paribas, Generali, Axa, Spirica), Pension managers (EPSOR, EPSENS), as well as the various Financial Advisers platforms of our partner 123-IM's Asset Management Advisors. Bpifrance Entreprises 1 has been selected as a unit-link in life insurance policies, and in French pension plans (PER). “The success of this first generation of funds demonstrates the enthusiasm of retail investors for financing unlisted French companies and calls for a successor fund to be launched soon” concluded Nicolas Dufourcq.

 

*Bpifrance Entreprises 1 is a venture capital fund (« FCPR »)