- French President Emmanuel Macron will announce plans to reform the country’s rules on employee stock options.
- Such compensation schemes give employees the chance to acquire a slice of the company they work for.
- It comes after 500 European start-up founders warned of a “brain drain” of the best and brightest in Europe.
France is bringing in new rules on employee stock options to lure in talent and compete with the U.S.′ top tech hub. President Emmanuel Macron will on Monday announce the government’s plans, which look to expand its stock options scheme to include foreign companies with staff in France, among other rule changes.
The package of reforms comes after 500 European start-up founders called on EU member states to update and align their rules on employee stock options, which give employees the chance to acquire a slice of the company they work for.
The entrepreneurs, which include Stripe CEO Patrick Collison and TransferWise boss Taavet Hinrikus, warned of a “brain drain” of the best and brightest in Europe if policymakers didn’t reform employee share ownership rules to help the EU’s tech sector rival Silicon Valley.
A letter signed by the tech executives and coordinated by venture capital firm Index Ventures was sent to lawmakers across the continent last year. Index Ventures, an investor in the likes of Adyen and Deliveroo, has claimed U.S. tech workers own twice as much equity in the companies they work for than their European counterparts.
The changes from France will also ensure the stock options are priced at a fair-market value instead of the value paid by investors to avoid penalizing early employees, as well as remove restrictions on start-up visas that require eligible employers to be based in France.