Wednesday, 20 October, 2021

FDJ, ADP…: how will the proceeds from privatization be used?


The Innovation Council set up by the executive a year ago has validated five major themes on which the government wants to invest. These projects are the concrete expression of the Innovation Fund, which the executive wants to fuel with revenues from privatizations such as that of the Française des Jeux.

The Minister of Finance, Bruno Le Maire, defends the privatization of the Française des Jeux, which should make it possible to increase public investment in innovation.

With the privatization of the Française des Jeux (FDJ), which will go public on Thursday, the state hopes to collect nearly 2 billion euros. A tidy sum, intended to supply a Fund for innovation and industry supposed to facilitate the adaptation of the French economy to technological change.

The government is going to celebrate this Tuesday the first anniversary of the Innovation Council, the structure responsible for deciding on the use of part of the funds collected. “The objective is to promote disruptive innovation, that which requires a strong technological content and whose spinoffs in terms of jobs can only occur in the medium or long term”, we explain to Bercy as a prelude to this first assessment.

The choice made by the government to finance this innovation has been criticized for many months by the oppositions. The Innovation Fund is already operational thanks in particular to the contribution of EDF and Thalès shares, but in the long term these public participations are destined to be replaced by the funds collected by the privatizations (FDJ therefore, but also ADP in the long term). In all, the fund weighs just over 10 billion euros, but only 250 million euros (the annual return) will be invested each year in innovation.

Concrete translations

This Tuesday, Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of the Economy and Finance, and Frédérique Vidal, the Minister of Higher Education, should come back to the first concrete translations of this diagram. Of these 250 million annually, around 60 million are allocated to industrial innovation plans, such as the Nano plan for micro and nanoelectronics or the Batteries plan; Another 70 million are entrusted to the BPI to bring about the emergence of “deeptech start-ups”, namely companies focused on innovations very close to fundamental research.

Finally, the lion’s share (120 million) is therefore cut out for the Innovation Council. “This structure aims to renovate the governance of innovation policies, by making the various industrial policies work together”, we explain to Bercy. The Board must in particular validate the themes which will be entitled to the promised funding.

For the moment, five have already been selected: development of artificial intelligence for medical diagnostics, certification of artificial intelligence, strengthening of cybersecurity, production of high value-added proteins, and high-density energy storage for planes or ships.

Française des jeux, the winning state every time

The Innovation Council set up by the executive a year ago has validated five major themes on which the government wants to invest. These projects are the concrete expression of the Innovation Fund, which the executive wants to fuel with revenues from privatizations such as that of the Française des Jeux.

The Minister of Finance, Bruno Le Maire, defends the privatization of the Française des Jeux, which should make it possible to increase public investment in innovation.

With the privatization of the Française des Jeux (FDJ), which will go public on Thursday, the state hopes to collect nearly 2 billion euros. A tidy sum, intended to supply a Fund for innovation and industry supposed to facilitate the adaptation of the French economy to technological change.

The government is going to celebrate this Tuesday the first anniversary of the Innovation Council, the structure responsible for deciding on the use of part of the funds collected. “The objective is to promote disruptive innovation, that which requires a strong technological content and whose spinoffs in terms of jobs can only occur in the medium or long term”, we explain to Bercy as a prelude to this first assessment.

The choice made by the government to finance this innovation has been criticized for many months by the oppositions. The Innovation Fund is already operational thanks in particular to the contribution of EDF and Thalès shares, but in the long term these public participations are destined to be replaced by the funds collected by the privatizations (FDJ therefore, but also ADP in the long term). In all, the fund weighs just over 10 billion euros, but only 250 million euros (the annual return) will be invested each year in innovation.

Concrete translations

This Tuesday, Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of the Economy and Finance, and Frédérique Vidal, the Minister of Higher Education, should come back to the first concrete translations of this diagram. Of these 250 million annually, around 60 million are allocated to industrial innovation plans, such as the Nano plan for micro and nanoelectronics or the Batteries plan; Another 70 million are entrusted to the BPI to bring about the emergence of “deeptech start-ups”, namely companies focused on innovations very close to fundamental research.

Finally, the lion’s share (120 million) is therefore cut out for the Innovation Council. “This structure aims to renovate the governance of innovation policies, by making the various industrial policies work together”, we explain to Bercy. The Board must in particular validate the themes which will be entitled to the promised funding.

For the moment, five have already been selected: development of artificial intelligence for medical diagnostics, certification of artificial intelligence, strengthening of cybersecurity, production of high value-added proteins, and high-density energy storage for planes or ships.

Française des jeux, the winning state every time