The trade of Armenian merchants with France was expanding… The port of Marseilles served as the most important base for them and, through it, the Armenian merchants carried on their trade also with Spain, Italy, and Africa.
The trade marts situated on the Atlantic coast of France, especially Bordeaux, Nantes, and Le Havre, were also very important in the Armenian trade network.
This was because, at the beginning of the 17th century, the Iranian Armenian merchants obtained the right from the king of France to settle themselves in all the big cities of France.
Though the French government had already promulgated several protective laws for the protection of French trade that concerned all foreign competitors in France, a special patent was issued on November 23, 1629, by Louis XIII and the cardinal de Richelieu by which the Armenian merchants had been allowed to have free access to the port of Marseilles.
Cardinal Mazarin and Colbert helped greatly to promote the trade of Iranian Armenian merchants in France. Colbert provided Armenians with such privileges and rights that no single oriental nation had enjoyed before.
Taken from Mano Chil