The Skolkovo Foundation, Business France, the French Government agency supporting the international development of the French economy, and PICOM retail accelerator of Industries du commercе association have signed a collaboration agreement. The document has been signed in the presence of the French Minister for the Economy and Finance Bruno Lemaire and the Russian Minister of Economic Development Maksim Oreshkin at the 23rd meeting of the Franco-Russian Economic, Financial, Industrial and Trade Council (CEFIC).

The agreement is aimed at the international development of innovation ecosystems of Russia and France, and promoting technology retail companies at Industries du commerce and Skolkovo ecosystems, both in Russia and France. The parties intend to support joint research and development projects through European programs and in international accelerators. Retail companies from Skolkovo will be provided with the opportunity to develop their contacts with French retail chains.

The agreement is the result of the Foundation’s successful business mission to promote the retail, which was delivered at the Paris Retail Week in September this year.

Foued KEFIF, Head of Technology in Business France Russia: “We want more start-up and SMEs to invest in Russia in 2018. The retail market is booming here and we have many French retailers, as Auchan, Leroy Merlin or Decathlon. Moreover, we are happy to help Skolkovo in his international adventure in France!”

Patrick Brunier, General Manager, PICOM: “PICOM is proud to be part of the partnership with the Skolkovo Foundation and Business France. For us, this is a unique opportunity to extend PICOM’s retail ecosystem to the Russian Federation. Through this partnership, we intend to promote close and bilateral innovation initiatives between Russian companies (SMEs and retailers) on one hand and our members on the other hand. We also intend to support SMEs growth and business towards both French and Russian markets. To achieve these ambition, PICOM will engage its contacts and knowledge in retail, its know-how in innovation management as well as its resources for Acceleration and project facilitation.”

Igor Drozdov, Chairman of the Board of Skolkovo Foundation:

“The agreement is aimed at two aspects at the same time: development of our wide business cooperation with French companies through Business France agency and narrow-focused partnership in retail sphere with the accelerator PICOM. The retail is getting “smart“, traditional retail and electronic commerce don’t work anymore, we need an integrated approach.

Skolkovo startups are already working with Western companies and implementing their solutions. Among our partners are such large retailers and manufacturers as Decathlon, Danone, Unilever, Mars, P&G and we hope to develop our cooperation with French business.“



Business France is the national agency supporting the international development of the French Economy. Its three key responsibilities are to : support French or foreign companies with their international development, facilitate job-creating foreign investment in France, promote France’s attractiveness to business.  www.businessfrance.fr

PICOM is a business cluster in the North of France that is focused on e-commerce and retail. It is the retail competitiveness group of the French Industries du commercе association.

The Skolkovo Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in September 2010 by the Russian government with the objective of accelerating Russia’s transformation from a resource-intensive to an innovation-based economy. To achieve this objective, the Foundation is overseeing the creation of the Skolkovo Innovation Center, composed of more than 1,700 high-tech startups, Skolkovo Technopark, the Skolkovo Institute of Technology (Skoltech) – a new graduate research University established in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology – and Skolkovo city, located near Moscow. Together, these entities establish a vibrant ecosystem of technology innovation and entrepreneurship. The cumulative revenue of Skolkovo’s startups reached $2,2 billion. They brought in more than $186 million in investment, creating 22,100 jobs and filing over 1,100 patent applications along the way. By 2020 over 2 million square meters of residential and office space will be built in Skolkovo with 35,000 people working daily in the Innovation Center. For more information:

Also published on Medium.