In 2010, one-half of SMEs with at least ten employees sought funding
Among French small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) active in 2005-2010 and employing at least ten people, 51% sought external financing in 2010, up from 42% in 2007. Bank loans remained the most commonly sought type of funds, but financing sources and methods are more diversified. Funding is also harder to obtain: 6% of businesses applying for loans in 2010 received none, three times the percentage recorded in 2007. The failure rate reached 11% for young, fast-growing “gazelle” firms in 2010. Nevertheless, when asked in a survey to rate potential obstacles to growth from 2010 to 2013, SMEs with at least ten employees are far less worried by access to financing (mentioned as an obstacle by only 8%) than by general economic conditions (listed by 80%).