7% of French software publishers capture 70% of the sector’s turnover

by bold-lichterman

  • Between 2013 and 2015, the cumulative turnover of the 250 largest French software publishers increased by 35%.
  • 70% of this turnover is generated by 7% of the players in the sector.
  • Software publishers have created 17,800 jobs over the past two years, nearly 60% located in France.

Booming, the software publisher sector remains highly concentrated, if we are to believe the results of “6th Panorama Top 250 French software publishers», Produced by the Syntec Digital in partnership with EY. Between 2013 and 2015, the cumulative turnover of the 250 largest French software publishers thus increased by 35% (from 9.2 billion euros to 12.4 billion euros). However, 70% of this turnover is produced by 7% of the players in the sector.

Among the main software publishers in the panorama, we find players such as Dassault Systèmes, Criteo or Murex in the Top 3 of so-called “sectoral” publishers (ie that target a particular sector, such as banking). Axway Software, Cegid and Neopost for their part in the Top 3 “horizontal” publishers (ie which offer a more comprehensive offer). The last category, which includes “individuals and games” publishers, finally includes companies such as Ubisoft, Gameloft or Avanquest.

Nearly 18,000 jobs created in 2 years

Asked about the breakdown of their turnover, software publishers (all categories combined) declare that they achieve 40% of their income through support and maintenance and 35% through the sale of licenses or products. A quarter of their income today comes from SaaS and Internet services (compared to 22% in 2014). Cloud and SaaS issues are also identified as the technological priority of the year by 49% of the companies in the panel.

Another observation is that “sector” publishers have experienced the strongest growth over the period, with cumulative turnover up 40%. In terms of company size, it is the most important players who have seen their activity grow the most in the past two years: a cumulative increase of 37% for publishers declaring a turnover of between 50 and 100 million euros. euros, and 39% for those with a turnover exceeding 100 million euros.

Finally, the last lesson of the study, more than three quarters (78%) of software publishers in the panel say they are facing recruitment difficulties. Between 2013 and 2015, however, they enabled the creation of 17,800 jobs, mostly based in France (in 58% of cases).

It should be noted that among its winners, Syntec and EY did not discriminate against the company if it had its headquarters in San Francisco, as for Talend (ranked 6th in the “horizontal” publishers category). Likewise, the investors of these French champions may be foreign, as in the case of Cegid (“horizontal” publishers category), bought by two Anglo-Saxon funds. “The investment fund is not intended to be part of governance” justifies EY.

Category of “sectoral” publishers

1. Dassault Systèmes

2. Criteo

3. Murex

4. Cegedim

5. Sopra Steria Group

Category of “horizontal” publishers

1. Axway Software

2. Cegid

3. Neopost

4. Sopra Steria Group

5. ESI Group

Category of “individuals and games” publishers

1. Ubisoft

2. Gameloft

3. Avanquest

4. Focus Home Interactive

5. Pretty Simple


** Methodology: overview produced on the basis of a questionnaire sent to French software players who declare that they are not subsidiaries of a foreign group for their 2015 financial year. The general classification is established on the basis of turnover of their software publishing activity. More than 380 publishers responded to the survey for this 6th edition.