Summary of our market study

The French surety market showed resilience and growth, particularly in the personal loan sector, where sums guaranteed by surety companies climbed to 765 billion euros in 2020. Although the market for guarantees offered to businesses and professionals shrank by -0.9%, the overall market remained solid, with financial guarantees surging by 18.6% to 17.3 billion euros.

The main market players are Crédit Agricole with 34.7% of outstanding mortgages, Groupe BPCE with 27.5% and Confédération Nationale du Crédit Mutuel with 15.7%.

Regulations have also changed, with new mortgage reforms capping borrowing terms at 25 years and affordability ratios to 35%, and the incorporation of surety bond laws into the civil code to enhance consumer protection.

Despite the global pandemic, the market proved robust and continues to demonstrate significant activity in both the personal and financial sectors.

Continued growth amid economic challenges

In the French surety market, the trajectory of continued growth is evident despite the prevailing economic challenges, which have recently been accentuated by the global pandemic. In particular, the personal loan market has seen remarkable growth, with over 95% of surety company commitments focused on performance bonds for individuals. Outstanding mortgage loans to individuals rose significantly, from around 722 billion euros to a substantial 1,137 billion euros in 2020, underlining the French population's increased propensity to obtain more and larger home loans. In addition, the rate at which individuals use surety bonds for mortgages is rising steadily, reaching around 63.4% in 2020, compared with 54.3% six years earlier.

A more detailed analysis of the market shows that guaranteed sums for personal loans will reach almost 765 billion euros in 2020, a clear sign of market confidence and the reliability of surety services. However, it is worth noting that while figures for individual loans have risen, the sums committed for guarantees to companies and professionals have fallen slightly, probably due to the increased risks associated with the health crisis that has impacted on the economy.

Nevertheless, the size of the surety company market, based on a solid foundation of sustained demand in the personal loans segment, has been estimated at around 1.6 billion euros in 2020. This estimate takes into account total outstanding home loans and the commissions that accrue to surety companies, which range from 150 to 600 euros in addition to a typical payment of 0.8% of the total loan value by the borrower.

The main market players, including banking groups and mutual guarantee companies, have, over the years and as they have expanded, secured their hold on the market, with some of them, such as Crédit Agricole and Groupe BPCE, boasting substantial market shares of between 25% and 35%. The market has seen only moderate changes in market share distribution, with a few exceptions such as HSBC Holdings, which has made notable gains.

Regulatory frameworks also influenced the market landscape, with 2020 seeing reforms that capped borrowing terms and introduced new affordability thresholds. These regulatory adjustments, along with specific new laws targeting surety bonds, reflected a move towards better consumer protection and a streamlined process that embraces digital transitions.

In conclusion, despite the unpredictable nature of global economic health, the French surety market has proved resilient with steady growth.

Key players shaping the French surety market landscape

In the dynamic territory of surety bonding, France boasts a diverse range of participants, from institutions specializing in issuing surety bonds to insurance companies providing financial guarantees. These entities play an essential role in reinforcing contractual commitments and ensuring monetary stability in various sectors. Let's take a look at the main players in this market.

  • Banque Publique d'Investissement (BPI) is a major player in the French surety market, widely recognized for the financial support it provides to companies. Serving companies of all sizes, BPI offers comprehensive bonding solutions, facilitating access to credit and supporting economic development in France.

  • Euler Hermes, the world leader in credit insurance, extends its expertise to the surety market, offering companies the protection and confidence they need to meet their financial obligations and commercial transactions. Its risk assessment and management skills are a cornerstone for companies looking for a stable bonding partner.

  • Crédit Logement is a key player for individuals wishing to obtain a home loan. Its offer includes a series of guarantees designed to reassure lenders about the borrower's ability to repay, making it easier for would-be homeowners to obtain mortgages.

  • Casden Banque Populaire focuses primarily on the education sector and civil servants, offering tailor-made financial products including guarantees. Its in-depth knowledge of the needs of the public sector gives it a strategic advantage in providing relevant, targeted solutions.

  • As far as insurance companies are concerned, we have names like CEGC (Compagnie Européenne de Garanties et Cautions) and CAMCA (Caisse d'Assurances Mutuelles du Crédit Agricole), who are diversifying the surety market with their varied offerings aimed at protecting companies and their stakeholders against unforeseen financial risks.

  • Galian provides insurance and financial guarantees to real estate professionals, securing transactions and deposits that are crucial to real estate transactions.

  • On the mutualist front, Siagi (Société Interprofessionnelle Artisanale de Garantie d'Investissements) stands out for its commitment to supporting small businesses, particularly in the craft and trade sectors, by focusing on supporting the craft community and bolstering their financial commitments through surety bonds.

  • SOCAMA (Sociétés de Caution Mutuelle Artisanale) represents the core values of mutual guarantee companies, with an emphasis on community support for local businesses.
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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of study

A surety bond is a contract by which a natural or legal person undertakes to pay the debt of another person when the latter is unable to do so another person's debt when the latter is unable to do so. The person who assumes responsibility for collecting the debt is called the guarantor. In France, surety bonds are governed by the Civil Code. There are several types of surety, such as simple surety and joint surety, both of which are included in this study.

The French surety market can be segmented into 4 key activities: surety for housing loans, for business and professional loans, for the financial sector and finally for the administrative sector. In 2020, the first activity accounted for 94.8% of total company sales, the second for 2.3%, the third for 2.1% and the last for 0.3%. The surety market has been growing since 2011. This growth is underlined by the rise in outstanding mortgages, which over the period 2011-2020 grew at a compound annual growth rate of 4.6%.

In France, surety bonding is mainly aimed at private individuals. In fact, over 95% of surety company commitments are performance bonds on loans to individuals.

The main players in the surety market are banking groups and insurance and mutual groups, such as SOCAMA.

The current environment in France makes the surety market a fast-growing sector.

1.2 A surety market in France that grows every year ...

Guarantee companies, particularly for personal loans, are paid a commission of between €*** and €***, depending on the value of the sum guaranteed. In other words, the higher the sum, the higher the commission. Then, as soon as the borrower receives the loan, he or she must pay the surety company *.*% of the ...

1.3 ... which, despite the global pandemic, is still going strong

despite the global pandemic, sums guaranteed by surety companies (***) continued to grow. In fact, sums guaranteed in mortgages for individuals rose by *.*% compared with ****, effectively taking their total to *** billion euros. Financial guarantees also rose by **.*% to a total of **.* billion euros.

By contrast, the sums committed for guarantees to businesses ...

2 Demand analysis

2.1 Credit guarantee applications for individuals

An "outstanding amount" is the sum that the debtor still has to pay when he takes out a loan, for example if person A takes out a loan of **,*** euros at a rate of *% in ****. He repaid **,*** between **** and ****, in the space of * years. Person A's outstanding balance is therefore **,*** euros ...

2.2 The sums involved in guaranteeing companies and professionals

Outstanding cash and investment loans to non-financial companies France, **** - *****, € billion Source: ****

in the chart below, ***** is marked with a star, as we do not yet have data up to December **, ****, but we do have data up to October **, ****. Thus, the data shown are representative up to October ****.

Overall, both investment ...

2.3 Demand for surety bonds from the financial sector

Between **** and ****, the sums committed by surety companies to the sector declined, falling by *.* billion euros, or **.*%. Over the ****-**** period, the sums committed have risen again, reaching **.* billion euros in ****. The biggest increase was seen in ****, with committed sums growing by **.*%, according to the ASF (***) report.

Amounts committed by surety ...

3 Market structure

3.1 An overview of the players in the surety market

The status of surety companies

Mutual guarantee companies, such as SIAGI, are companies generally set up by trade unions or private individuals to help companies wishing to enter the sector. They also guarantee companies with fewer than ** employees and sales of less than ten million euros, to help them grow. This ...

3.2 Breakdown of surety companies

Geographical distribution of surety companies

Geographical distribution of surety companiesFrance, ****, in number of companies

Source: ****

To produce this map, we used NAF code **.**Z -"Other credit distribution"-. This NAF code is not only specific to surety companies, it also includes financial services activities consisting mainly in the granting of ...

3.3 Structure of the bonding market

Market shares of the various groups in terms of outstanding home loans at June **, **** France, ****, as % of total Source: ****

In the home loan guarantee segment, Crédit Agricole was in the lead in **** with **.*%, followed by Groupe BPCE (***) with **.*%. Confédération Nationale du Crédit Mutuel came third with **.*%.

market ...

4 Offer analysis

4.1 Different types of surety

There are several types of surety offered by credit institutions:

the landlord or financial institution first turns to the principal debtor (***) to try to recover the sums owed. Only if the principal is insolvent, and legal proceedings against him or her are unsuccessful, will the guarantor be involved. in the case ...

4.2 Prices for surety companies

Prices of surety companies for home loans

A bank guarantee requires the payment of a commission of between *** and *** euros, as well as a contribution to a Mutual Guarantee Fund (***) of around *.*% of the loan amount.[***]

Source: ****

For mutual guarantee companies

Generally speaking, the cost of a guarantee file with a ...

4.3 Alternatives to bank guarantees

There are several other alternatives to bank guarantees:

Conventional hypothec: the principle consists in voluntarily pledging the property that the lender has to pay to the bank that agreed to make the loan. As soon as the lender can no longer pay the fees required to repay the loan, the bank ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Bonding regulations

A new set of laws for surety bond standards

Prior to the new ordinance introduced in ****, laws concerning surety bonds were scattered throughout the Consumer Code and the Monetary and Financial Code. In ****, they will return to the Civil Code. This means that consumers will be better protected, since the new ...

6 Positioning the players

6.1 Player segmentation

  • Allianz Trade (ex Euler Hermes)
  • BPI France
  • Galian
  • Casden Banque Populaire
  • CEGC (Compagnie Européenne des Garanties et des Caution)s
  • Siagi
  • Crédit Logement

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Guaranteed sums for personal loans
  • Bonding rates for mortgages
  • Healthy outstanding real estate loans for individuals
  • Guarantees provided by surety companies for businesses and professionals
  • Outstanding cash and investment loans to non-financial companies
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Latest news

Bpifrance ready to launch a third private equity fund - 19/12/2022
  • 100 million euros raised in six months from 7,000 non-professional investors
  • Its predecessor, the Bpifrance Entreprises 1 fund, attracted 4,000 retail investors
  • Bpifrance Entreprises 2 is based on a portfolio of 1,500 companies in which the public bank has already invested
  • The average investment per investor was 15,000 euros

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Allianz Trade (ex Euler Hermes)
BPI France
Casden Banque Populaire
CEGC (Compagnie Européenne des Garanties et des Caution)s
Crédit Logement

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