B2B payment practices trends, France 2024

Payment Practices Barometer

  • France
  • Construction,
  • Consumer Durables

There is anxiety among French businesses about the level of bad debts, which now affect 10% of all invoiced B2B sales, double that of last year.

Key takeaways from the report for France  

The 2024 Payment Practices Barometer survey for France was conducted between the end of Q1 and the beginning of Q2 2024. The findings should therefore be viewed with this in mind.

Bad debt surge sparks heightened cash flow concerns

  • Although 73% of companies in France tell us they are open to offering trade credit our survey finds a widespread reluctance to do so in practice. An average 40% of B2B sales are currently being transacted on credit, while 60% of B2B sales made on cash suggests a
    safety-first approach among French businesses.
  • The construction sector is the most inclined to trade on credit, where an average 46% of B2B transactions are being made on credit in a bid to stimulate demand and drive sales. A desire to build long-term customer relationships is the main factor behind an average
    41% of B2B sales currently made on credit in the French consumer durables industry and an average 36% in the energy/fuels sector.

Wide range of worries as domestic economy stalls

  • The major concern for the year ahead among French companies is about the domestic economy, which businesses feel is at a standstill. This is both a short-term and long-term worry across all sectors of our survey. There is also apprehension about a stringent monetary policy putting pressure on future investment.
  • Another widespread short-term anxiety is the issue of regulatory compliance and potential changes in government policy in this area. Environmental and sustainability worries are also evident in our survey along with cybersecurity threats.

The Atradius Payment Practices Barometer is an annual survey of business-to-business (B2B) payment practices in markets across the world. Its findings can give valuable insights into the current dynamics of corporate payment behaviour in B2B trade. It can also help companies doing business, or planning to do so, in the markets polled to identify emerging future trends in the payment practices of B2B customers. 

Interested in finding out more? 

For a complete overview of the 2024 survey results for France and Western Europe, please download the full reports available in the related documents section below. 

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