How can we accelerate the development of the European Digital Champions?

Le 15/12/2018 - 00h00

Consultation with Institut G9+, Roland Berger, Croissance + and

Participate in the consultation

The digital economy is growing steadily on a global scale. According to the latest report from IDATE, it is continuing to grow at a sustained pace: +3.8% in 2014, +4.2% in 2015 and 2016.

Economies are currently undergoing enormous transformations. This is now an all-too-familiar observation. The industry’s value creation has shifted towards the digital sector. As new needs emerge, in Europe, in The United States, large sections of our tertiarised economies are mutating in a spectacular fashion, creating new potential for growth. A new, extremely powerful economy is developing around data, the cloud and digital security.  Artificial intelligence is a revolution within these revolutions, opening up new perspectives and re-dealing the cards between digital powers.

However, this global growth of the digital economy is not taking place everywhere at the same pace. The reality is that the strength of this economy is concentrated over a few regions in the world.  We can talk about hyper-concentration with real disparities within the geographical zones in question.

Despite the efforts and willingness displayed over the years on the European continent, Europe is no longer holding its own. In fact, its weight in the world economy is in a constant, slow decline.  In other words, Europe is not benefitting fully from the upside of global digital growth, unlike other countries such as The United States or China.

The reason is now all too familiar and has been identified. Even though very dynamic ecosystems exist, notably in France, the global digital transformation of our European economies is still taking place too slowly compared to our competitors.

In addition to Europe lagging behind through a lack of sufficient investments, there is a second key factor: the tremendous, global, digital acceleration benefits firstly a handful of world actors, principally American and Chinese, the famous GAFA and BATX (Baidu, Tencent, Alibaba, Xiaomi).  This position allows them currently to decide upon new standards and above all to grasp the lion’s share of new market opportunities.

Faced with Europe’s delay in securing investments, and the emerging, hegemonic American actors (GAFA), how can the Europeans, and principally the two leading economies on the continent, the German and the French react?

How can we accelerate the European Digital Champions’ development?

The European elections offer a tremendous opportunity for a great wakeup call in or the European digital sector. Thanks to an unprecedented mobilisation of a vast coalition of private actors around the Institut G9+, we shall, over the coming months, place the question of European leadership in the digital sector back at the heart of the political agenda.

For the first time ever, The Institut G9+, Roland Berger, Croissance+ and will allow French and German citizens to take ownership of this issue on a massive scale; and their extensive participation will result in a citizens’ White Paper: the first, true citizens’ roadmap on the subject.

Around the White Paper we shall, in the second phase, re-engage cohorts of citizens in the deployment of concrete action plans and shall launch a series of private, wide-reaching initiatives, of which:

  • A symposium organised by the partners in the consultation, during which the principal results will be presented and contradictory debates held,
  • A contribution to a prominent Franco-German, European or international political event so as to generate committed action plans around major proposals,
  • Mobilisation of companies and associations around certain proposals directly actionable at their level.