France is considering a biotech tax cut believing that tax reform will boost innovation, but I’m not so sure that companies decide on starting or relocating to one country over another based on some tax cuts.

The proposal is for special tax status for “young listed companies” (“jeunes entreprises cotees”) that would help companies after initial public offering (IPO), expanding on a program that now helps companies before IPO. The plan would give investors and shareholders in companies with less than ?150 million (USD $195.4 million) in annual revenues and with fewer than 2000 employees breaks from capital gains taxes, inheritance taxes, wealth taxes, retirement, and other “social” costs 8 years after a company goes public.

Like the Midwest, I think France needs more aggressive researchers and venture capitalists specialized in biotech before they need tax cuts. It’s interesting to see how various governmental agencies all wring their hands at trying to develop a plan to be the Silicon-valley for biotech whenever that boat’s sailed.

See more at:

J. Burgermeister, “French scientists plan protest,” The Scientist, January 10, 2005.

S. Pincock, “Life sciences centers compared,” The Scientist, June 11, 2004.

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