Investing and working in France: which resident permits ?

6 March 2018 | Immigration in France

Do you wish to establish a commercial or industrial company in France as a manager, entrepreneur or foreign investor? Regardless of their form – site creation or extension, industrial or technological partnership, acquisition or financial investment –, there are 5 available options:

Case n°1: Foreign nationals wishing to hold a legal representative role on French territory

 Are able to hold an agent status position within a company:

  • Any Managing Partner of a Limited Liability Company (Société à Responsabilité Limitée, SARL)
  • Any CEO of a corporation (Société anonyme, SA) or simplified stock corporation under French law (Société par Actions Simplifiées, SAS)
  • Any natural person who may incur the liability of a company incorporated under foreign law (branch representatives or liaison officers)

In these circumstances, the “Passeport Talent Mention Mandataire social” (Talent Passport – Company Officer)  is the appropriate resident permit.

Case n°2: Foreign nationals wishing to establish in France in view of a foreign direct investment

The “Passeport Talent Mention Investisseur Economique” (Talent Passport – Investor) is the designated resident permit.

Be careful: the amount of capital of the investment plan must be at least 300,000 euros. In the latter case, a multiple-entry short-stay visa (circulation visa) may suffice.

Investors and Business Angels associated with the French Tech program are also eligible for this resident permit. For more information, please see the French Tech Visa website.

Case n°3: Foreign nationals planning to start a business in France

 The business plan may come in various forms:

  • Sole proprietorship
  • Creation of a company under French law
  • Creation of a company under French law, but subsidiary of a foreign company
  • Creation of an establishment of a foreign legal entity

Subject to a minimum capital investment of 30,000 euros in the business plan, foreign nationals are eligible for the “Passeport Talent Mention Créateur d’entreprise” (Talent Passport – Entrepreneurship).

Case n°4: Foreign nationals wishing to undertake an innovative business plan recognized by a public body

The “Passeport Talent Mention Porteur d’un Projet Économique Innovant” (Talent Passport – Innovative Business Plan) is the relevant resident permit. This relates to French Tech Ticket laureates, as well as to startup founders selected by the so-called French Tech “incubators” or “accelerators”. For more information, please see the French Tech Visa website.

Case n°5: Other entrepreneurs and licensed professionals

Other foreign nationals wishing to invest and conduct a business in France are eligible for “VLS-TS mention Entrepreneur / Profession libérale” (VLS-TS Entrepreneur / Professional activity), as long as they fulfil the required conditions. This residence permit which is valid for 1 year and allows to settle in France in order to start one’s business  is renewable subject to conditions.

As a foreigner, you want to invest in France? We stand alongside you in order to facilitate the mobility of your employees to France or to any other country.