Sèvres is a town southwest of Paris which is famous for its fine porcelain. The factory is known as the Manufacture nationale de Sèvres, and though it was initially based at Vincennes, the porcelain has been produced since 1740. Sèvres was chosen for its proximity to to Madame de Pompadour's Bellevue Palace; she and the king, Louis XV, were supporters of the enterprise from the start. His palace at Versailles was also nearby. He was obliged to provide heavy financial assistance, as he was keen for the pieces produced to be as fine as they could be. Later, Napoleon enjoyed obtaining his porcelain from Sèvres; as time went on, the emerging middle class also began to purchase, enabling the factory to become financially stable.