Where else in Europe can a company find a location where the following are guaranteed:

  • recruiting and supporting international teams,
  • integrating decision-making functions and R&D centres,  
  • taking part in visits from major opinion leaders in specialised sectors several times a year over the course of events that bring together the world's leading decision-makers,
  • enjoying quick flights throughout the day linking you to your key clients and European sites,
  • using a safe, reliable location for high added value business?

All of these aspects of setting up a business are requirements that are often concerns for some of the businesses that choose to locate their decision-making centres and shared functions in Nice or Sophia Antipolis - requirements that the Côte d'Azur satisfies again and again.

A strategic location in the heart of the EMEA

Nestled in the heart of the Mediterranean, half way between Asia and the American continent, the Côte d’Azur boasts an exceptional geographic location.

Connected to the entire world

The Côte d’Azur offers companies extremely efficient connections on national, international and local levels.

The area enjoys direct connections to the European capitals, North America, and the Middle East (Dubai) via daily flights, thus confirming its position as one of Southern Europe's airport platforms.

The Nice Côte d'Azur airport

The Nice Côte d’Azur international airport opens the door to

  • 105 destinations in 33 countries
    25 return flights serviced throughout the day
    Less than 2 hours travel time to reach the main European capitals
  • Daily direct flights to: Paris: 35 • New York: 1 • Dubai: 2 • Helsinki :1 • Moscow: 3 • Stockholm: 2 • Copenhagen: 4 • London: 19 • Amsterdam: 6 • Frankfurt: 4 • Munich: 5 • Montreal • Tel Aviv, etc.
  • Exceptionally close: 5km from Nice city centre and 20 minutes from Sophia Antipolis
  • France's leading airport after Paris
    with 11 million passengers of which 61% travel internationally and 25% are business clients
    Europe's 3rd largest airport in terms of business clients
    Home to France's first low cost business airline.

A market for the taking

Business clients and international customers

  • 1700 foreign-owned companies
  • 400 national and international professional events every year
  • 12 million tourists and cruise passengers worth an estimated 10 billion euros in revenue
  • 500,000 convention and meeting participants
  • France's number one cruise centre with 924,000 passengers
  • Europe's leading stop-off point for pleasure yachts
  • France's second most popular destination for international business tourism with 2 million business or convention clients visiting every year
  • France's highest concentration of 4- and 5-star hospitality establishments. 


The perfect springboard to European and Mediterranean markets

The Côte d’Azur offers businesses a strategic anchoring point from which to develop operations across Europe and the Mediterranean region. The location also serves as the perfect pool from which to identify and recruit specialist, multicultural talent thanks to an environment that fosters multilingualism and specialist training programmes.
The area is ideal for hosting decision-making centres and companies.

An innovative environment

The Côte d’Azur is establishing its desire to become a European metropolis with the following wide-scale projects:

  • Sophia Antipolis, Europe's leading science and technology hub and a world leader in ICT, Nice smart city, 'contact free' city, and in NFC (2010).
  • the Eco-Vallée, a pioneer in cleantech and smart grid projects.

Innovation on the Côte d'Azur

  • The world's first connected boulevard (Nice with Cisco in 2013)
  • France's 1st smart grid territorial charter (2013)
  • 1st smart grid pioneer in France: Nice Grid (2011)
  • Nice, the only French city to be awarded the 'Smarter Cities Challenge' title from IBM (2011)
  • The world's 1st low enthalpy solar energy thermodynamic power plant, piloted in the context of a 'smart grid': the Sophia Antipolis Energie Développement thermodynamic solar power plant (2010)

Shared functions currently in place

  • Head offices and decision-making centres: Koné, Arkopharma, Virbac, Mane & Fils, Robertet, Panini, Hills Pet Nutrition, GSF, Rodriguez Group, Proair, Luxottica, Sacla, Dow, Luxottica, CooperVision
  • IT centres: Honeywell, Air France, CERTIAM
  • Design centres: Toyota, SDW, Link to Concept
  • Knowledge-based companies, foundations and international organisations: Société Européenne de Cardiologie, European Society of Medical Ontology (ESMO), W3C, ETSI.
  • Support and training centres: Fortinet, Institut Marcel Fournier (Carrefour), 
  • Customer service and booking centres: American Express, IBM, Air France – KLM, Accenture, Expédia, Santiane, CSI, Convers
  • R&D centres: Amadeus, ASK, Autodesk, Cadence Design Systems, Cisco Systems, Daily motion, Hitachi, Huawei, HP, IBM, Intel, Lagardère Interactive, Orange Labs, SAP Labs, Symantec, Samsung, Magnetti Marelli, Qualcomm, Freescale...

A pool of fantastic skillsets and talents with an international flavour

  • The Côte d’Azur welcomes the 3rd highest concentration of management professionals in France, with a service sector that provides jobs for 83% of the workforce. Over 160 nationalities are represented here, and with 25.9% of the population are qualified from a higher education (INSEE 2009), the Côte d’Azur boasts an extremely cosmopolitan profile that centres on services and shared functions. [>] Human Resources
  • Big management schools such as SKEMA Business School, Edhec, Esicad, Espeme, Idrac, Ipag, the Young Entrepreneur School and Sciences Po Paris use the area to train multicultural and multilingual managers. [>] Schools and universities
  • High standard of living, economic dynamism and technological excellence combine to make the Côte d’Azur a highly attractive region for managers and engineers. In 20 years, the proportion of higher management professionals in the Nice urban area has doubled (CCI/Sirius 2012), and for 72% of French managers across the country, the PACA region remains the region of France they would most like to move to (Provemploi 2012). [>] Standard of living


An attractive offer on a European scale

The Côte d'Azur offers a diversified portfolio of sites at extremely competitive rates compared to other large European cities. Office space is 4 times cheaper than in Paris.
In Sophia Antipolis, new building works are currently being developed across a total surface space of 500 000 m2.

In Nice, within the context of operation of national interest the Eco-Valley, the Grand Arénas is a business district of 155 000 m2 located just across from the airport - and is to soon enjoy a 51 hectare extension with an international exhibition park and a multimodal transport interchange. Currently in development is Nice-Méridia (320 000 m2), soon to be Nice's urban science and technology park.

5 reasons to choose the Côte d'Azur to set up your decision-making centres and shared services

  • An international city in the heart of the Mediterranean, world-renowned with a cosmopolitan population and relaxed, high quality standard of living.
  • Connected to the entire world, with highly efficient direct flights to the big European cities, the Middle East and North America.
  • A pool of talents and an available workforce with a focus on services, engineering and management
  • Prestigious science parks, from Sophia to the Eco-Valley - fantastic locations from which to display the latest technology, brushing shoulders with world leaders in microelectronics and IT, smart cities and cleantech
  • Attractive property that is extremely competitive compared to other large European cities - a global place at village prices.