Linkedin Launches French Version and Aims to Become a Reference for French Businesses Large and Small

Paris — November 25, 2008 — LinkedIn, the world’s leading professional network with 31 million members around the world, is stepping up its European development with the launch of its French-language platform today. After the launch of it’s Spanish LinkedIn version in July, this latest version supports the network’s ambition to have 8% of the professional population in France (1.2 million members) — up from 4% today — and to increase its popularity among France’s large and small businesses. The French-language website is a strategic opportunity, according to LinkedIn’s founder and chairman Reid Hoffman, to “bring together the world’s professionals and accelerate their success”.

French, an essential language for a knowledge network 
“Adding a French language platform extends the power of LinkedIn’s professional network to all French speakers — who can leverage the power of collective intelligence.” said Reid Hoffman. 

The French platform reaches out to the world’s 175 million French speakers1, plus the 85 million people who are learning French. “Far from being a language on its way out, French is the 9th most spoken language in the world. It’s also the only language besides English to be spoken on all five continents. Its use in the business community should not be neglected!” He added. 

LinkedIn, an asset for the competitiveness of companies of all sizes 
As the financial crisis lingers, networking is a key asset for all players in the French economy, particularly small and medium enterprises. Indeed, statistics show that SMEs with an international focus are more competitive2. Now more than ever, it is in SMEs’ interest to hook up to a genuinely international network that will help them to find the ideal trade partner, expert or representative in almost any country. 

“In the current context, companies large and small need all the tools they can get to face increased local and international competition, while making optimal use of financial and human resources. To overcome the crisis and even boost their competitiveness, it has become even more important to share knowledge. Now more than ever, professional networking is an asset for the competitiveness of SMEs,” explained Kevin Eyres, LinkedIn’s MD Europe. 

The professional network is a source of knowledge that enables companies and individuals to get the right information on time to act best on while developing, innovating and collaborating. Some of the most represented large companies on LinkedIn in France include names such as: France Telecom, BNP Paribas, Société Générale, Alcatel-Lucent, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Atos Origin and Renault. 

On the other hand, 28% of LinkedIn members around the world work in SMEs as well as 24% of French members. 

LinkedIn part of the business tools of SMEs 
“In France, 53% of job offers are posted by SMEs (48% globally). This is all the more useful since LinkedIn gives companies access to an unparalleled quality of candidates: the average French LinkedIn user is approximately 41 and earns over €70,000 annually. We also know over 75% of our members are university educated and are decision makers within their company” Eyres added. French Grandes Ecoles are also well represented on the LinkedIn network with 20,000 alumni of Polytechnique, 13,000 of ESCP-EAP and 12,000 of ESSEC. 

LinkedIn also encourages knowledge-sharing thanks to a dedicated Answers application. On average the application gets over 600 questions on a daily basis and more than 3,000 answers. To date, over 14,000 questions on “Startups and SMEs” have been asked on LinkedIn and over 70% of them have been answered. 

APEC, an essential partner 
APEC, the specialist of career-management in France, is LinkedIn’s partner since its launch in France, in March 2008. Today, Gabriel Artero, APEC President, declares: “We are very happy to share with LinkedIn, the leader of professional networks, the key step that consists in the launch of a French version. More than ever, we advise executives and companies to network. In a moving economic context, we give them the keys to optimize their use of networks and anticipate change.” 

A propos de LinkedIn 
LinkedIn est le réseau de connaissances pour les professionnels. Il permet de transposer son réseau professionnel sur Internet, donnant un accès sans précédent à de nouvelles opportunités professionnelles : gestion de carrière, recherche d’emploi, échange de compétences... Construit sur des relations qualitatives entre ses membres, LinkedIn est devenu le réseau professionnel le plus étendu et le plus puissant du monde. LinkedIn compte à ce jour plus de 31 millions de membres, représentant 170 secteurs d’activités dans 200 pays. Sont également représentées la majorité des entreprises du FTSE 100 et l’ensemble des entreprises du Fortune 500. LinkedIn est soutenu par des investisseurs de renommée mondiale comme Sequoia Capital, Greylock Partners, the European Founders Fund, Bessemer Venture Partners, Bain Capital Ventures, et depuis peu Goldman Sachs, The McGraw-Hill Companies ou encore SAP Ventures. 

En Europe, LinkedIn rassemble plus de 7 millions de membres. 

A propos de l’Apec 
L’Apec accompagne les entreprises dans leurs recrutements de cadres et conseille les cadres dans la gestion de leurs évolutions professionnelles. Les activités de l'Apec s'articulent autour de 3 pôles : la communication RH, le recrutement et la mobilité (cadres et entreprises). En outre, elle analyse et anticipe les grandes tendances du marché de l’emploi cadre. Aujourd’hui 40 000 entreprises et 600 000 cadres utilisent les services de l’Apec via, site leader de l’emploi cadre en France avec 31, 5 millions de visites en 2007, ou ses 46 centres implantés en France. Avec 888 collaborateurs, dont plus de 640 professionnels du recrutement et de la gestion de carrière, l'Apec apporte des conseils personnalisés et des solutions sur-mesure aux cadres et aux entreprises. Retrouvez toutes les informations sur l’Apec sur le site, rubrique « Espace Presse ».

About LinkedIn 
LinkedIn takes your personal business network online, giving you access to people, jobs and opportunities like never before. Built upon trusted connections and relationships, LinkedIn has established the world’s largest and most powerful business network. Currently, over 31 million professionals are on LinkedIn, representing all five hundred of the Fortune 500 companies, as well as a wide range of household names in technology, financial services, media, consumer packaged goods, entertainment, fashion, and numerous other industries. LinkedIn is backed by world-class investors including Sequoia Capital, Greylock Partners, the European Founders Fund, Bessemer Venture Partners, Bain Capital Ventures and now Goldman Sachs, The McGraw-Hill Companies, and SAP Ventures.