What is a PDP, OD and PPF in France e-Invoicing?

Updated on: Jul 26th, 2023


7 min read

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French businesses shall start preparing for the changes and new requirements to implement e-invoicing w.e.f 2024. The France e-invoicing guidelines notified three methods for sending and receiving e-invoices. They are Partner Dematerialisation Platforms (PDP), Dematerialisation Operators (OD) and The Public Invoicing Portal (PPF).

Every business must decide among the above methods to comply with the French e-invoicing mandate. This article explains these methods and how to manage e-invoicing activities in France.

What is a Partner Dematerialisation Platform or Plateformes de Dématérialisation (PDP)?

Partner Dematerialisation Platforms or Plateformes de Dématérialisation Partenaires (PDP) are 

government-certified e-invoicing service providers. In this method, the seller can issue and receive e-invoices directly with the service provider of the buyer without going to the PPF. However, the service provider of the buyer shall also be a PDP.

Businesses worried about single platform failure, which could happen in case of PPF is down, can opt for this method.

What is the role of a PDP in French e-Invoicing?

PDPs help you

  • Report e-invoices or lifecycle statuses to the PPF
  • Send e-invoices to the buyer’s PDP and report required data to the PPF in case the buyer is a PDP and has an interoperability agreement. 
  • Send the tax invoice to the PPF to transmit the same to the buyer in case the buyer is not using a PDP.
  • Perform e-reporting of transactions mentioned in the French e-reporting mandate, especially cross-border B2B and domestic B2C transactions.
  • Convert e-invoices into standard formats such as Factur-X, UN/CEFACT CII, and UBL 2.1 to comply with European Union (EU) norms.

Further, the PDP must convert the seller’s invoice format to the buyer’s requested format under strict conditions ensuring the data integrity, authenticity, and exhaustiveness. It is to be noted that the PDP must adhere to regulations and requirements as part of the certification process.

Who are Dematerialisation Operators or Opérateur de Dématérialisation (OD)?

Dematerialisation Operators or Opérateur de Dématérialisation (OD) are the e-invoicing service providers in France but have not been certified by the government. From an overall perspective, ODs provide similar functions to PDPs. However, they can’t directly issue or receive e-invoices. They must use PPF as the intermediary to perform e-invoicing activities. 

Unlike PDPs, Dematerialisation Operators (OD) can connect with all other service providers offering dematerialisation services of e-invoices. Further, an OD must connect with PPF or other PDP platforms to manage e-invoices and lifecycle statuses.

What is the role of OD in French e-invoicing?

The role of Dematerialisation Operators or Opérateur de Dématérialisation (OD) is similar to PDP, and they are responsible for 

  • Digitalising and converting invoices into any of the three government-approved formats, i.e., Factur-X, CII or UBL and 
  • Issuing e-invoices through the PPF

What is the Public Invoicing Portal or Portail Public de Facturation (PPF)?

The Public Invoicing Portal or Portail Public de Facturation (PPF) is the new platform for France B2B e-invoicing. The PPF will be directly connected to Chorus Pro, the present government portal for B2G e-invoicing. 

The invoice data passed through PPF will be reported to the Tax Administration of France, i.e., Direction Générale des Finances Publiques (DGFIP). The PPF also acts as a Central Directory for e-invoicing.

Besides ensuring the administration of the Directory, Public Invoicing Portal (PPF) also provides a free-of-charge service to businesses who have chosen to use this platform directly instead of connecting via an OD or a PDP. The PPF will be accessible and utilised manually via a web portal or direct integration (API/EDI). 

What is the PPF’s role in France e-invoicing?

The PPF’s role is to:

  • Administer and facilitate the exchange of electronic invoices and payment statuses.
  • Administer the Central Directory
  • Collect billing, transaction, payment data, and information relating to the life cycle status of the e-invoice to transmit the same to DGFIP.

Further, PPF can optionally be used for international B2B transactions and shall provide compatibility with the Chorus Pro portal.

What is the Central Directory’s role?

PPF administers the directory, i.e., the centralised database. Hence, all e-invoicing applicable businesses must register with the Central Directory.

  • It is critical for exchanging e-documents between the different service providers and platforms under French e-invoicing.
  • It contains the necessary data for ensuring the correct routing of the e-invoices.
  • It enables the identification of each e-invoice in the recipient’s chosen platform.
  • It identifies businesses based on the French SIREN number. 
  • However, if the businesses opt for better identification, the directory may use the SIRET.