In this article, we will take a look at 15 of the most valuable French companies in the world. If you want to see some more of the most valuable French companies, go directly to 5 Most Valuable French Companies in the World.
France is one of the largest countries in the European Union. With a population of over 46 million, the country has a GDP of $2.94 trillion in 2021 and one of the world's most advanced economies. In terms of its modern economy, France has world class infrastructure as well as a modern regulatory system. As a member of the European Union, France has 46 preferential trade agreements. Government spending amounted to around 57.6% of GDP over the last three years and the private sector also plays a significant role.
In terms of the EU, the economy of the European Union is one of the largest in the world, with a GDP of slightly over $17 trillion in 2021. Of the nations in Europe, only Germany has a higher GDP than France at around $4.2 trillion in 2021 versus France's $2.94 trillion.
In addition to France having a large GDP and expected growth in the near future, many leading French companies also trade in Europe and globally. As a result, the 15 most valuable French companies in the world are worth a lot.
Given France's reputation as one of the most beautiful places in the world, many of the most valuable French companies are global luxury leaders such as Dior, Hermès, and LVMH. In fact, each of those three companies are worth more than $100 billion as of October 14. Several other French companies are also leading global financial companies given the size of France's economy.
Like the stocks listed in many other nations, many leading French stocks have fallen substantially this year. In terms of the CAC 40 index, which is considered a benchmark of the French stock market, the leading index is down 17.07% year to date. In terms of the Europe, the Euronext 100 is down 17.18% year to date. The Euronext 100 includes many blue chips listed on the Euronext exchange.
Meanwhile in the United States, the S&P 500 index is down around 25% year to date and the NASDAQ composite is down around 35% year to date.
The declines are due to the Federal Reserve having increased interest rates 5 times this year to fight inflation. With inflation still remaining a problem, many expect the Federal Reserve to raise rates even more.
On September 21, the Federal Reserve issued a FOMC statement,
"In support of these goals, the Committee decided to raise the target range for the federal funds rate to 3 to 3-1/4 percent and anticipates that ongoing increases in the target range will be appropriate. In addition, the Committee will continue reducing its holdings of Treasury securities and agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities, as described in the Plans for Reducing the Size of the Federal Reserve's Balance Sheet that were issued in May. The Committee is strongly committed to returning inflation to its 2 percent objective."
If interest rates go higher, it can be harder for some businesses to make as much money due to potentially lower demand. Although France isn't the United States, many French companies do business globally and demand for many companies is affected by the U.S. Fed's interest rate increases given that the U.S. dollar is so widely used.
Growth expectations are slowing in France potentially due to the interest rate hikes. On September 13, France cut its economic growth forecast for 2023 to 1% as the country faces headwinds such as volatile energy prices that could disrupt business and also strong inflation. France previously expected its GDP to grow by 1.4% in July. In terms of inflation, France expects inflation to be 5.3% for 2022 and 4.2% for 2023, up from the previous 5.1% and 3.3% respectively.
Given the volatility, it could be a good idea for long term investors to have a well diversified portfolio of leading companies across many different sectors.
For our list of 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World, we took the 15 largest companies by market cap from companiesmarketcap.com's the French companies by market capitalization list.
15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World
15. Pernod Ricard SA (OTC:PRNDY)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $43.4 billion
Pernod Ricard SA (OTC:PRNDY) is a global wine and spirits group based in France. The company is number 2 globally but has the ambition to be the leader given its portfolio of 240 premium brands in more than 160 countries. Pernod Ricard SA (OTC:PRNDY) was created in 1975 from the merger of two French copanies, Pernod, and Ricard. Later the company acquired multiple companies including Seagram in 2001.
Like Pernod Ricard SA (OTC:PRNDY), TotalEnergies SE (NYSE:TTE) is also one of the most valuable French companies in the world.
14. EDF (Electricité de France)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $45.08 billion
EDF (Electricité de France) In 2021, the company had €18 billion in EBITDA and €4.7 billion in net income excluding non-recurring items. EDF (Electricité de France) also had a 76 GW wind and solar pipeline. As of October 14, EDF (Electricité de France) has market cap of $45.08 billion, ranking it #14 on our list of 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World.
13. Vinci SA (OTC:VCISY)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $46.88 billion
Vinci SA (OTC:VCISY) is a global leader in concessions, energy, and construction based in France.With 260,000 employees, the company designs, finances, builds, and operates infrastructure and facilities that improve daily life and mobility. In 2021, Vinci SA (OTC:VCISY) had revenue of €49.396bn and net income attributable to owners of the parent of €2,597m.
As of October 14, Vinci SA (OTC:VCISY) has a market cap of $46.88 billion.
12. AXA SA (OTC:AXAHY)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $52.58 billion
AXA SA (OTC:AXAHY) is a leading multinational insurance company based in France that also provides investment management and other financial services. The company has 149,000 employees, operations in 50 countries and also 95 million clients.
In terms of its revenues by geographic region, AXA SA (OTC:AXAHY) gets 28% of its sales from France, 33% from Europe excluding France, and the rest elsewhere. In terms of AXA SA (OTC:AXAHY)'s underlying earnings, 54% is from property & casualty, 32% from life and savings, 9% from health, and 5% from asset management and banking. As of October 14, AXA SA (OTC:AXAHY) had a market cap of $52.58 billion.
11. BNP Paribas SA (OTC:BNPQY)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $53.38 billion
BNP Paribas SA (OTC:BNPQY) is a leading European bank based in France that offers global financial services and solutions serving clients and employees. BNP Paribas SA (OTC:BNPQY) has a presence in 65 countries and close to 190,000 employees and supports customers such as entrepreneurs, SMEs, and institutions with financing investment, and more. With a market cap of $53.38 billion as of October 14, BNP Paribas SA (OTC:BNPQY) ranks #11 on our list of 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World.
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $53.79 billion
Kering is a global luxury group based in France that makes leather goods and jewelry. In 2021, Kering had revenue of €17.65 billion and free cash flow from operations of €3.95 billion. As of October 14, Kering also has a market cap of $53.79 billion, ranking it #10 on our list of 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World.
9. Air Liquide
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $60.02 billion
Air Liquide is a world leader in gases, technologies, and services for industry and health that's based in France. The company has around 66,400 employees and serves over 3.8 million customers and patients.
The company also remains at the forefront of its industry with 13,500 patients filed by the group in its history including 354 new patents filed in 2021. As of October 14, Air Liquide had a market cap of slightly over $60 billion.
8. Schneider Electric
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $65.99 billion
Schneider Electric is a France-based energy company with an energy management and industrial automation segment. In 2021, the company had revenue of €28.9 billion and net income of €3.2 billion. Due to the broader market weakness, shares of Schneider Electric are down around 40% year to date. Nevertheless, Schneider Electric still has a market cap of almost $66 billion as of October 14.
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $67.21 billion
EssilorLuxottica is a global leader in the design, manufacture, and distribution of ophthalmic lenses frames, and also sunglasses that is based in France. The company brings in advance lens technologies along with craftsmanship of iconic eye wear to create a vertically integrated business with substantial scale. With more than 180,000 employees and also over 11,000 patents, EssilorLuxottica had €19.82 billion in revenue in 2021 and €1.46 billion in net income. As of October 14, EssilorLuxottica also has a market cap of $67.21 billion.
6. Sanofi (NYSE:SNY)
Market Capitalization as of October 14: $100.47 billion
Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) is a global healthcare company that makes potentially life changing treatments and life saving vaccines. The company has a substantial pipeline with 19 projects in phase 1, 36 projects in phase 2, 28 projects in phase 3, and 4 projects in registration. Currently, Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) has around 100,000 employees, close to 20 R&D sites, and has operations in 100 countries. On 10/14, Emmanuel Papadakis of Barclays cut his price target on Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) to EUR 85 from EUR 105 but kept an 'Equal rating'.
With a market capitalization of $100.47 billion as of October 14, Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) ranks #6 on our list of 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World.
Companies like TotalEnergies SE (NYSE:TTE) are also among the most valuable french companies in the world.
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Disclosure: None. 15 Most Valuable French Companies in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey.