Lawyers in France all set for Alternext

French lawyers are gearing up for the launch of Europe’s answer to AIM. Alternext will be launched on the Bourse de Paris (the French stock exchange) on 17 May, and firms are already beginning work on potential flotations.

Simmons & Simmons’ Paris office is one of the first firms to announce that it has a client looking to float on Alternext. French partner Thierry Gontard, who specialises in stock market and IPO work, is leading the deal.

Gontard said Alternext’s launch will offer French lawyers, as well as companies and investors, many new opportunities. “As always with new things, it creates some interest,” he commented.

He added that the costs of listing on the public market are putting investors off, giving rise to more activity in the private equity sphere. Alternext will offer companies another way of raising funds.