Wednesday, 19 January, 2022

Michel and Augustin: why the troublemakers of taste are settling down … a little


They promise: “We remain very present, it is only an evolution. ” But, once again, it’s hard to take the self-proclaimed duo of troublemakers seriously. Certainly, Augustin Paluel-Marmont and Michel de Rovira, both 40 years old, have calmed down since the beginnings of their brand known for its biscuits and its drinkable yoghurts sold in supermarkets for thirteen years: it has been a long time. that we no longer see these pros of street marketing disrupting a competitor’s press briefing with humor, taking the metro disguised as cows, or smuggling their bottles of yoghurt to drink on Bill Gates’ desk during a conference.

Youtubers before fashion, their schoolboy exploits have boosted the success of their cakes, for a budget close to zero. But it is with the utmost seriousness that these two graduates of Sup de Co Paris, having gone through consulting, banking, Air France and Club Med, have invited themselves to the snacking market. Their products devoid of colorings and additives have seduced by their simplicity, like their American models, the creators of the American ice cream brand Ben & Jerry’s.

Selection validated

Today, they announce a new stage of the

m> But, once again, it’s hard to take the self-proclaimed duo of troublemakers seriously. Certainly, Augustin Paluel-Marmont and Michel de Rovira, both 40 years old, have calmed down since the beginnings of their brand known for its biscuits and drinkable yoghurts sold in supermarkets for thirteen years: it’s been a long time. that we no longer see these pros of street marketing disrupting a competitor’s press briefing with humor, taking the metro disguised as cows, or smuggling their bottles of yoghurt to drink on Bill Gates’ desk during a conference.

Youtubers before fashion, their schoolboy exploits have boosted the success of their cakes, for a budget close to zero. But it is with the utmost seriousness that these two graduates of Sup de Co Paris, having gone through consulting, banking, Air France and Club Med, have invited themselves to the snacking market. Their products devoid of colorings and additives have seduced by their simplicity, like their American models, the creators of the American ice cream brand Ben & Jerry’s.

Selection validated

Today, they are announcing a new stage of the brand which bears their first names and whose sales are growing by more than 20% per year: “We were the right leaders to create an adventure, embody it and achieve a turnover of 50 million euros; we have decided to leave the management to an experienced manager who will be able to take the company to 100 million and to international markets ”, explains Augustine.

The new CEO is François Roche-Bayard, 57 years old. For twenty-five years he managed the St Michel-Bonne Maman biscuit factory, a much more discreet company but which was also a small brand before becoming one of the market leaders, with more than 400 million sales. annuals. “Father, grandfather, sincerely committed to sustainable development issues, rugby coach, passionate about products, he joined us at the end of 2017 to take up his duties as general manager on March 1”, reveals Augustine. Danone, a 40% shareholder in the small brand via its Danone Manifesto Ventures fund, of course observed the candidate’s selection. This is very logical for a shareholder who must recover, by 2019, the 40% currently held by Artemis, the holding company of the Pinault family, the two creators retaining 20%.

The next few months promise to be crucial for the SME installed in a backyard of Boulogne-Billancourt (Hauts-de-Seine), nicknamed La Bananeraie, already too small for its 100 employees. The two founders, who first shared their office with their successor during his acclimatization phase, gave him room to join the open space on the ground floor with the sales, marketing and content providers. .

The roles have been clearly distributed. “It’s François the boss! says Augustine. We no longer have any employees who report to us directly and no longer participate in the management committee. ” Relieved of day-to-day management, the two partners will devote their time to exploring new ways of bringing their brand to life. There are many unexpected avenues: boarding house, coworking space, e-commerce, events… It’s up to them to prove that their brand is not like the others, by constantly renewing their adventures as heroes of smiling entrepreneurship.

Choppy market

For François Roche-Bayard, a well-known retailer but unknown to the general public, the mission of finding a future for their cookies in a market trusted by giants such as Mondelez (LU). The new CEO will also orchestrate the relaunch of the entire portfolio. “We are preparing the release of a revolutionary new cookie, we have redesigned all of our packaging and we are launching new products”, Augustin announces. So – should we see the influence of Danone, itself a world champion in soy, hazelnut and almond milks? -, Michel et Augustin released a vegan range with, among other things, a chocolate mousse “With coconut milk and chickpea water”.

There is no doubt that the Michel et Augustin brand relies on its innovations and the strong attachment of its consumers. But where will its two creators be in five years? Hard to say. In the United States, Ben and Jerry left their company, which had become Unilever-owned in 2000, without saying so.

Making of

The Banana plantation is like a beehive during this February holiday period, invaded by the trainees of 3e. While the serious Michel de Rovira works in peace, his vibrating accomplice shows us around the offices, where the majority of employees are women in their thirties.

Consumer goods