In more than 90 countries

Support by the
Crédit Agricole group

Last updated: January 2024

Crédit Agricole Group is a leading global banking player (10th largest bank worldwide and 2nd European bank by tier one capital, 46 countries covered, 145 000 employees, 53 million customers worldwide).

  • It ranks no 1 in France for retail banking and is a major partner to the French economy.
  • It serves a vast array of businesses from start-ups to large corporates, whether domestic or international
  • Almost 1 out of 2 French companies bank with Crédit Agricole Group
  • As a universal bank, CA Group offers all specialized business lines: leasing, factoring, insurance, asset management, consumer finance, etc.

Crédit Agricole Group has the largest banking network in France with the Crédit Agricole (39 regional banks, 7,100 branches) and LCL brands (10 regional offices, 1,500 branches).

Its 900 relationship directors and 470 International Trade Experts, at Crédit Agricole and LCL, offer clients tailor-made solutions, thanks to local back offices.

The Group has also set up a network of international desks to support its clients outside their domestic market. The same desks also support international companies wishing to develop in France.
They will help them find local banking solutions and will connect them with their extensive network of preferred partners : law firms, Chambers of Commerce, Altios International, Business France (French Government agency ) and BPI France (French Public Investment Bank).

The Crédit Agricole Group is also present in France with its various specialised services (its branches in particular):

  • Crédit Agricole CIB (Corporate and Investment Bank),
  • Crédit Agricole Indosuez Wealth Management (private banking),
  • Crédit Agricole Assurances (banking and insurance),
  • Amundi (asset management),
  • Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance (consumer credit),
  • Crédit Agricole Leasing & Factoring,
  • Caceis (securities management),
  • Crédit Agricole Payment Services (payment methods),
  • Crédit Agricole Mid Cap Advisors (advice for small and mid-cap mergers and acquisitions),
  • IDIA Capital Investment (minority support in agrifood, agri-industry, viticulture, etc.).


Means of payment

With France

Company cheque

Bank cheque

SWIFT transfer


Bill of exchange

Promissory note

Documentary remittance

Documentary credit


Weak / None

Weak / None


Weak / None

Weak / None

Weak / None




Advice from the
international desk

General Information

Recommendations for success in business in France:

  • First official contact, preferably by email,
  • Business lunches, where intellectual and amicable exchanges open up relationships,
  • Adhere to the schedule and agenda,
  • Provide written confirmation of conversations and agreements,
  • Negotiations to be held in French if not in English,
  • The submission of the documentation in French is appreciated. 

Means of Payment & Banking Specificities

Payment deadlines have generally been respected in France since the coming into force of the LME Law No. 2008-776 of 4 August 2008 which stipulates that “the deadline, agreed between the parties for the payment of the sums due, may not exceed 45 days from the end of the month or 60 days from the date of issue of the invoice”. Certain sectors, such as road transport, are, however, governed by older laws (30 days from the date of issue of the invoice).

Article 3(1) of Directive 2011/7/EU of 16 February 2011 on combating late payment in commercial transactions between private undertakings stipulates: ‘Member States shall ensure that the payment period laid down in the contract does not exceed sixty calendar days, unless expressly provided otherwise in the contract and provided that this does not constitute a manifest abuse of the creditor within the meaning of Article 7 (Contractual terms and unfair practices)’.

It should be noted that the transposition into French law has still not retained this provision authorising the 60-day time limit to be exceeded, unlike in several other EU member states, as Law 2013-100 of 28 January 2013, in Title IV, only concerns late payment in contracts with the public sector.

The use of cheques on the domestic market remains common despite a net drop. France remains the largest user of cheques among the European countries (70% of cheques issued in the European Union in 2018, far ahead of the United Kingdom, which is in second place at 17.3%, according to the Banque de France); commercial bills are also used. For international transactions, the cheques,the promissory note and the bill of exchange are to be avoided, it is recommended to use bank transferts, preferably Swift or documentary credit depending on the amount. It should be noted that the use of the stand-by letter of credit in gradually tending to grow.


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