France's top corporate finance chiefs are getting lessons on thespecifics of acquiring startups in a push by a state-backedinvestment fund to triple tech deals in the country within threeyears.

Chief financial officers from France's biggest companies, frombanks to industrial conglomerates, are learning to pin a price tagto a startup, spot when a company is ripe to be snatched up, andcalibrate how many acquisitions it takes to land a technology goldnugget. Their teachers are venture capitalists or otherentrepreneurs, called in by Bpifrance, an investment fund supportedby the government that has spent years pumping money into thecountry's startup ecosystem and investing alongside other funds toprovide reassurance.

“What France's tech scene needs now is more exits,”Paul-Francois Fournier, Bpifrance's head of innovation, said in aninterview in Paris ahead of a conference Wednesday detailing itsinvestment strategy. “Bigger companies are learning to manage theirstartup investments, and VCs can teach them a lot.”

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