The topic

Will we be eating better tomorrow? Thierry Blandinières (GE 83)

In light of changes in our fast-evolving consumer landscape, the entire food chain needs to adapt. Thierry Blandinières, Audencia graduate back in 1983 and managing director at InVivo, the leading farmers’ co-operative in France, joins us here to share his insights on the subject.


What is your take on the latest patterns emerging in the food sector?

Thierry Blandinières: All those working in the sector have drawn the same conclusion: consumers are now more and more demanding when it comes to food safety. They are calling for more transparency with regard to the tracing and tracking of food products from source and production processes. Increased awareness on the benefits of a healthy diet is causing consumers to adopt new patterns of behaviour. All this is putting a great deal of pressure on farming, the agri-food industry at large and food distribution. We will all need to undergo a radical transformation and reinvent how we go about things.


Is consumer confidence wavering to such a degree?

Thierry Blandinières: Clearly so. What’s needed is for farmers to reconnect with consumers. These end users would like to increase their understanding of the food continuum to encompass farming in the surrounding area, local know-how and the art of living enjoyed in their particular region. They are on the lookout for products which are more in sync with their newfound expectations: organic local produce which is accessible from farm-to-fork and which, in their eyes, is a guarantee of healthy eating. Tomorrow’s food chain will have to go a long way to win back this wavering consumer confidence.  


With this in mind, can emerging technologies be brought in to help professionals achieve this end?

Thierry Blandinières: As confidence has taken a nosedive, this has in turn opened up a tremendous window of opportunity for new entrants to come up with fresh ideas. Against the backdrop of new technologies, digitalisation and emerging markets, these individuals are now pushing for changes within the established models.


Is the InVivo group heading into this wind of change brought about by new developments in food tech?  

Thierry Blandinières: Together with our traditional trades which are constantly keeping apace with change, we have also set up InVivo Food & Tech, a laboratory that allows us to remain proactive with regard to emerging food trends by supporting innovative start-ups thanks to InVivo Invest, a dedicated investment fund. Alongside this, we are also seeking to boost creativity and underpinning this is InVivo Quest, a worldwide competition where entrepreneurs, students or employees from the group can put forward their ideas on innovations in the food sector.





Guy-Pierre Chomette, Editor


The topic

CSR and corporate catering

Audencia, Sodexo and sustainable food

Within the framework of its partnership with Sodexo, a trailblazer in services related to quality of life, Audencia’s CSR Chair has conducted a study on sustainable food inside three works canteens in the Nantes region.

Individual and group interviews were carried out with a cohort of 35 participants:  business clients, guests and kitchen staff. The aim was to evaluate the end users’ eating habits within their place of work.

Gervaise Debucquet, teacher-researcher at Audencia, presented the survey’s findings at the Nantes Food Forum 2018 and the “Food and well-being in the workplace” roundtable which took place on 4 October this year.


What do we learn from the study?

The survey reveals that sustainable food remains an elusive concept for those diners taking part in the study. They tend to prioritise taste, a pleasurable eating experience and value for money over ecological considerations. Paradoxically, some of those surveyed have “sustainable” food habits while away from work without necessarily adopting these same practices at work, where they display more passive eating habits.

Sustainable food makes sense in corporate foodservice outlets as long as the company makes room for a coherent CSR policy and if it deploys in-house communication avoiding any directives to “eat sustainably”. So, herein lies the challenge to make mass catering meaningful by putting the guest in a position where he is a consum’actor just as he is in his private life.

In the spring of 2019, an experiment will be conducted in a pilot works canteen in the region. A quantitative behavioural study will further supplement these findings.

Read here the full study report by heading to the CSR Chair’s website.




Mélanie Dugue, on behalf of Audencia 

The topic

"Changing the world one bite at a time", Laura Belfadla (GE 05)

With a passion for energy, meditation and yoga, Laura Belfadla has been getting more and more involved in well-being practices which, without exception, have all moved her towards a keen focus on food.

Laura Belfadla graduated from Audencia back in 2005 and went on to spend the next eight years moving in the world of law and finance before making a complete career U-turn. She settled down in Quebec for four years where she then set up her own company, the Académie Végétale, on her observation that, on the other side of the Atlantic too, approaches to food are all too often riddled with guilt and even moralistic.

Dietary commandments remain too restrictive in her eyes, especially as she is a foody and does not hold back on tasty Breton pancakes or Moroccan tagines, two emblematic dishes from her dual culture, when the opportunity presents itself. 

You can’t go telling people what they should or shouldn’t do, but rather inform them and inspire them with ideas on ingredients they can add to their meals, she says. When it comes to food, education is key. How can you cook more vegetables and ones that the whole family will enjoy? What are the most pesticide-contaminated vegetables? Where can you buy in bulk to reduce your waste production? Indulging in a tasty burger from time to time isn’t a no-no if you eat fruits and vegetables the rest of the time and supplement your diet with germinated seeds or fermentations.”

For Laura, food is primarily a childhood memory, a family meal or a pleasurable indulgence. So what can we do to make this culinary experience both tasty and wholesome? The excessive supply of industrially processed foodstuffs goes no way in helping consumers take their power back over food. In changing the way we consume and by moving more towards healthy eating, the consumer puts himself in an incredibly powerful position: one where he has the power to change the distribution system.

“All this isn’t going to happen overnight,” Laura continues. “Nevertheless, lessons at the Académie Végétale urge consumers to seek out small producers and locally-sourced produce, to sign up to receiving organic hampers, to add water to their diet, as well as make efforts to reduce waste. By teaching healthy, organic, responsible cooking, we are contributing towards nutritional awareness. If we are what we eat, then let’s stop eating junk! This wake-up call is the first step on a journey towards more self-love and respect.”

Discover Elise Roger’s story (Sciencescom 13) and the concept behind “Dans Le Noir?”


For a deeper insight: Christophe Brusset, Vous êtes fous d’avaler ça! (You are crazy to eat this!)  (Flammarion, 2015);  Et maintenant, on mange quoi? (So now what do we eat?) (Flammarion, 2018).



Guy-Pierre Chomette, Editor


The topic

Ethical and responsible consumerism: the new challenge

Wellbeing, healthcare, food safety and the list goes on. When it comes to what we eat, we are becoming increasingly concerned with the quality, quantity and healthy nutritional value of our food. Yesterday, it was mainly price point which determined the bulk of our purchases. Today, everything boils down to quality. Consumers are prioritising their forks over their wallets and today’s consumer is now willing to put their money where their mouth is.

In February 2018, Harris Interactive conducted a study* and the findings reveal that almost 8 out of 10 of the French people sampled reported eating responsibly. These consumers are taking things a step further by going beyond the concept of sustainable consumption, which focuses on the environment and resources: they are adding both ethical and social aspects into the mix.

This means taking a keener interest in recycling and the waste war, as well as cutting down on packaging and the amount of rubbish we produce! However, it also encompasses the fair treatment of producers, short food supply chains, responsible catering and the championing of local farming and trade.


Committed to remaining ethical throughout their career…

Many Audencia alumni have also become involved in this drive and incorporated ethics into their careers and entrepreneurial projects.

This is the case for Emeline Bergeron (Exec MBA 15), who after many years working in farm advisory services and alongside NGOs, became involved with the Domaine de la Fessardière, driven by her passion for enterprise and love of nature. On this winery, all pesticides are banned, in favour of more organic practices for “processing methods which fully allow the terroir to be brought out in the wine.” All the white wines produced on the domaine are certified “organic”.

As for Emmanuel C. Chukwuma (IMM 13), he converted his end of study project into a business creation. He founded Chooka, providing hibiscus-based beverages, developed with products which are both healthy and good for the body. Chooka works in association with farming communities in Nigeria, by respecting the principles of sustainability and fair trade and also by pooling their knowledge and resources which makes it possible for them to achieve more rapid and sustainable development.

In the same vein, we could also point to:

  • Organic cider providers, Fils de Pomme, founded by Théo Brunais Le Pautremat (student entrepreneur)
  • La Fratern, the responsible restaurant being created by Boris Couilleau (GE 01)
  • Beauty Manake (FAM 15), who founded Kungo Farms in Botswana
  • Turnkey solutions to produce your own food, without working up a sweat, provided by Johan Nazaraly (GE 11) with MyFood


Many more besides go to make up our rich and diverse community of Audencia Alumni.

* Study conducted by Harris Interactive,  institute for marketing studies, in February 2018 from a cohort of 1001 French people aged 18 and over.  78% of the sample group reported eating responsibly.



Sara Ben Lahbib (IMM 16) 


Campus life

Career Connections Week delivering an unprecedented platform for exchange

It’s a first!  Audencia is organising the Career Connections Week event to be held in Nantes from 21st to 24th January 2019. The purpose is to provide the ideal setting for students on the Grande Ecole programme as well as companies and graduates to meet one another. The four-day programme of events will be marked by a spirit of openness, curiosity, personal contribution and daring, while setting the tone will be the event’s baseline: “Act now for your future!”  

Career Connections Week promises to be a "career-oriented gathering", say the project organisers Natacha Ratiarison and Emilie Tendron. It is the fruit of a multi-disciplinary and collaborative work, aiming to "connect students on the Grande Ecole programme with national companies (large corporations, small and medium-sized companies and start-ups) and alumni” and also to “forge links enabling students to act now for their future career".

How do I go about choosing my internship? How do I choose my specialisation? How can I decide on a career path? Do I have a realistic view of the profession I have in mind?

Every day from 21st to 24th January 2019, no fewer than forty guest speakers, including many alumni, will be taking part in and around the Atlantic Campus in Nantes, helping first year and specialised masters’ students in their quest to find answers to these searching questions.


Get involved with this event!

Modelled after the concept of "speed-meeting", open discussion and exchange between students and alumni will be the order of the day.

Calling all alumni! Would you be willing to share your experience with us? This is a shout out to any alumni who wish to come forward to share their story and talk about their career path in order to inspire and advise students. The good news is you still have time to sign up!

"This is indeed a golden opportunity to reconnect with students and other alumni too. It’s now or never!" Emilie and Natacha conclude.



Florence Falvy, Editor


Campus life

Audencia Forum: two whole days of win-win relations

Welcome to the Audencia Forum, the meeting point bringing together recruiters with students and graduates from Audencia. Let’s get a deeper insight into what this event, already on its tenth edition, has to offer.   

If you are looking to build or effectively manage your career path, explore different professions, grow your network or land a student/graduate internship or job offer then the Business Forum is the place to be. This year on 11 and 12 October, spearheaded by Audencia, the gathering provided some golden career-boosting opportunities! No fewer than 83 companies (Amazon, BNP Paribas, Cdiscount, Disneyland Paris, Fleury Michon and many more) took part in this two-day networking event. So what do they all have in common? They are all experiencing rapid growth and are currently on the lookout for new talent. This event is therefore a great opportunity for them to recruit second-to-none candidates from among the 1,000 students attending the forum.


Making a comeback!

The Audencia Forum was also a chance to cross paths with 73 of our alumni. Two of these former graduates were back here for the first time since their graduation. They were Frédéric Lé (GE 80) who is currently Associate Director at DXC Technology, and Matthieu Lelarge (GE 06) for his part Business Analyst Manager at Ferrero France. Both have built exemplary and successful career paths which are an undeniable source of inspiration to our Audencia students.

Furthermore, a number of these graduates took advantage of the Audencia Forum to take a look back over their time at the school. This is the case for Clémentine Dauvergne (GE 18):

"Thanks to Audencia, my final year helped me hone my professional skill-set in financial audit and industrial management control, paving the way for me to join Eurovia and access the position of Head of Administration and Finance".

Another encounter, this time was with Damien Hodebourg (Bachelor - IPAC 95). He has spent his entire career working for Danone. This is an agri-food chain where 70% of interns go on to land a job at the end of their work placement.

"Feel free to come and speak to us!" he advises.

A word to the wise!



Florence Falvy, Editor

Campus life

Conferences: from Neuroscience to Geopolitics

Quite a crowd at the Petit Palais

Every year, Audencia organises a prestigious event specifically aimed at preparatory class teachers who are preparing students for entry into the French Grandes Ecoles. The purpose of this event is to promote the school within this influential group with a view to attracting the brightest talent.

On 5 November this year, around 100 teachers gathered together at the Petit Palais in Paris for a conference focussing on memory, a general knowledge subject covered on the 2018 exam.

After a welcome speech given by Christophe Germain (Managing Director at Audencia) and Nicolas Arnaud (Director of Audencia’s Grande Ecole Programme), it was then the turn of Lionel Naccache to take the floor. Lionel Naccache was formerly a student at the Ecole Normale Supérieure, a prestigious teacher-training college, and is now a physiology lecturer at the Université Pierre-et-Marie-Curie (Sorbonne University), and indeed a neurologist, and neurophysiologist at the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital. He is also a cognitive neuroscience researcher at the French Brain & Spinal Cord Institute and, since 2013, he has been a member of the French National Consultative Ethics Committee. Lionel Naccache demonstrated how and why, since the 1950s, a number of key findings in neurology and the neurosciences have revolutionised our monolithic understanding of memory.

The conference watchword was “inspiration”. The school can give itself a huge pat on the back for attaining its objective and holding high the Audencia banner.

Head to our website to browse photos taken at the Petit Palais.


Isegoria’s top-notch conference

In the words of Pascal Boniface, "In recent times, far-reaching geopolitical transformations have been upsetting global strategic balance, heralding the end of the line for our western power duopoly.

The geopolitologist, director of the French Institute for International and Strategic Affairs (IRIS) and lecturer at the Institute for European Studies at Université Paris 8, was invited to be guest speaker by the Isegoria Club on 27 September this year. Audencia’s student body, which organises conferences with leading figures from the world of politics, economics, culture and the arts, invited him to give a talk which lasted just over an hour.

Pascal Boniface took us through his insightful analysis into the attitudes and actions of leading powers, in a world which has now become multipolar and is more than ever in dire need of multilateralism.

There were 300 attendees, including students and residents from Nantes, who had the opportunity to both listen and put forward their questions to him on strategic transformations in world order.

View the conference video at our website.



Amandine Luce, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team



Network talk

The Blin family: close family ties with Audencia

The Blin family have a history of having very close-knit bonds with Audencia and this wonderful story began when the parents, Jean-Yves and Suzanne, first crossed paths while both studying at the school. They graduated back in 1951 and their three sons would all go on to follow in their footsteps here at Audencia: Jean-Michel (GE 78), Gilles (GE 82), who would also meet his wife Christine (GE 82) during his course, and finally François (GE 87).

Without a shadow of a doubt, François is the one with the strongest bond with the school, since he is currently an alumni ambassador in Madrid.

However, he admits to initially choosing Audencia more for “the sake of convenience”. At a time when it wasn’t as easy to get around as it is today, a school’s reputation and ranking were less important than proximity. Yet, it was also an era when things were starting to open up internationally and so he decided to move to Spain, a project supported by Audencia faculty members.

“It’s so reassuring to feel supported, guided and assisted. The school fosters close student-faculty relations, whether it be with the CFO, the communications manager or the teaching staff. They have always been there for me and given me helpful advice.”

Another benefit of the school, according to François, is the importance placed on management and also the multidisciplinary nature of its teaching.We are destined to become executives and therefore team managers, not experts but all-rounders. The school is well aware of this and today enables us to make sense of every situation and know who the specialist is in order to figure things out or find a solution.”

This same versatility can indeed be found within the Blin family: Jean-Michel is a Managing Director, Gilles a Director for administration and finance, Suzanne used to teach accounting and Christine teaches marketing. As for François, he has followed in his father’s footsteps to become a Chartered Accountant and Statutory Auditor. Since 2003, he has also become a Spanish ‘Auditor de Cuentas’ (Accounts Auditor).

This special relationship they enjoy with the school is something François is attempting to foster among his peers, students and alumni from Audencia, by dedicating himself to developing the Madrid chapter.

“Today, everyone is well aware of just how important a network is. It facilitates relations and can prove very useful in many different situations: getting to meet the experts, swapping stories, promoting and selling your products and services, or finding a job.”

He is indeed a valuable and dedicated ambassador who is helping to promote both the alumni network and the school, taking part in strengthening cross-links to other networks in Madrid such as the RAGEFE*, as well as helping to fast-track Audencians, to Madrid and beyond.


*RAGEFE: Alumni Network of the French Grandes Ecoles in Spain which currently has over 1,000 members.



Géraldine Lance, Editor


Network talk

You are the network

As president of the Audencia Alumni Association since July 2018, Flavie Lorre (GE 98) made her first public address during the GE 18 graduation ceremony on 20 October this year.     


What message are you hoping to get across to recent graduates during this ceremony?

Flavie Lorre: This ceremony is a very special time which recognises the transition when graduates say goodbye to studying at the school and hello to being part of the alumni network. It’s a time of turning the page and moving on to a fresh new chapter. This class year has demonstrated its gloriously creative energy and spirit of innovation during their time at the school, but must now go on to channel this energy into their career and the network. I am urging them to get active and become the new agents of Audencia Alumni as they fly high the school flag.


Why should graduates be getting involved with the Audencia Alumni network?

Flavie Lorre: Audencia Alumni allows you to keep in touch with your former class year peers. What’s more, it’s a golden opportunity to network with other graduates from different courses and from different backgrounds. This enables you to swap stories and learn from each other.

The network also represents an extensive community where the members know and appreciate one another and foster excellent relations. No matter whether these communities are career-related, cultural, sports clubs, social get-togethers, in France or abroad… what’s essential is to share and enrich each other’s lives in a mutually beneficial way.

Finally, a professional career is not all plain sailing. There are tremendous opportunities as there are disappointments. Audencia alumni have the opportunity, at any time, to get support from the network and the services provided by Audencia Alumni, with Audencia Careers, to hone their skill-set or receive tailored coaching. This truly is a key resource you can turn to.


During your speech, you kept coming back to the subject of pride, would you care to elaborate on this?

Flavie Lorre: Being an Audencia graduate is being proud of a personal achievement, a diploma, a school and its renown. The network is a concrete example that epitomises this pride and sense of belonging. An Audencia graduate is in it for the long haul and enjoys life-long membership.   


What do we need to do if we are to keep strengthening the alumni network?

Flavie Lorre: There’s no shortage of ideas. However the network’s main asset lies essentially in its members getting involved. It’s a virtuous circle, the more members get on board, the more dynamic and straightforward the network becomes, so the greater its value and everyone stands to gain from this.

My advice to recent graduates: if you want to be a stakeholder then make it happen. Come and join us and let’s all build this together. You’ll be able to help steer the network towards themes that you feel passionate about. You are the network, the network is you! See you back here in the not-too-distant future for your first steps into Audencia Alumni.



Guy-Pierre Chomette, Editor


Network talk

Never a dull moment at Audencia

Celebrations happening all over the place

Class years from Audencia’s 88, 98 and 2008 SciencesCom programmes had the pleasure of gathering together for their 10th, 20th and 30th anniversary celebrations at the start of the new school year. Each class year had arranged to meet up in Nantes or Paris to take a look back over the good old days, while sharing stories in a joyful and convivial setting. Such was their delight in seeing each other that they have wasted no time and already arranged a meet-up in 2019, this time in the summer, where they have plumped on having a barbeque party.

Have a look at the photos 88 and 98.

Meanwhile, graduates from the Grande Ecole programme have been enjoying their own celebrations. A total of 41 of them, from the GE class year of 78, gathered on 28 September this year at Audencia. Martial Le Berre, former lecturer, joined in on the celebrations. This special school homecoming, providing them with a chance to reminisce over their student years, was greatly appreciated by all guests in attendance, an impressive 40 years post-graduation. See more photos.

On 13 October, it was the turn of those from the class of GE 08. They had their meet-up in Paris, on board a barge which was moored at the quayside. Forty attendees took part in toasting their class year’s 10th anniversary, as part of an unforgettable evening of celebrations. There was an engaging programme of events: a cocktail reception, with two rooms – two different moods (musical) and throw-back hit songs from 2004 to 2008 of course.

The GE 98, for their part, gathered together on 20 October, where 59 guests joined in on the party celebrating their 20th class year anniversary. It was quite a bash, going on until 4 o’clock in the morning, hosted at the Villa Frochot, a former Parisian cabaret.


MDC: these last 10 years have flown by

The Specialised Masters in Marketing Design Creation is all set to celebrate its 10th anniversary. Organised by three students (Roxane Joly, Fanny Spiroux and Chloé Cubaud) under the tutorship of Nicolas Minvielle, Programme Director, the anniversary weekend promises to be quite something. On 1 and 2 December, around sixty alumni are expected to attend the event being held at the Mediacampus. On the programme of events: conferences, student presentations, mingling workshops, project pitches, strategy and collaborative activities, and much more besides. Activities happening on Saturday will carry on to the Manoir de Procé where there will be a cocktail reception and an evening of dance. We are going to keep you in suspense as to the wonderful surprises we have in store for you. We will however let you in on the fact that we’ve hired a chef to take charge on Sunday morning and that the weekend will wind up over dinner hosted at the Château de la Rosière.


Audencia SciencesCom is opening up its doors  

On Saturday 8 December next month, Audencia SciencesCom is organising the first in a long series of Open Days at the Mediacampus. It’s THE place to be if you want to learn more about this school of communication and the media, where you can rub shoulders with alumni as well as the students and teams here, and find out everything you need to know about training courses, student projects, professions, international openings and lots more besides.

For more information



Amandine Luce, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team


Around the globe

A European hop adventure

Pierre Ghyselen is a student on the Grand Ecole programme and currently on a year-long break carrying out his API (Individual Project Year) and gaining greater insight into craft beer making in Europe. His objective is to meet with the brewers of Europe: brewers, hop-growers, distributers, starred chefs, entrepreneurs and many more besides. “My idea was to restore the important status of beer and show that there genuinely are quality products being produced with a great flavour as well as a history behind them,” he explains.


A fulfilling year with a few challenges along the way

Actually having the courage to take the time to carry out his project was the starting point for Pierre. "When I was 20, I had no clue as to what I wanted to do or even who I wanted to become, but now I have a few pointers".

For Pierre, this year of discovery has enabled him to enjoy the bliss of being at the helm of his own boat, discovering and learning as he pleased. “One day, I might be learning all about wild yeasts in Brussels and the very next day, I could be collaborating with brewers in London.”

Travelling can be expensive on a student’s shoestring budget, even if you are travelling as light as possible. Therefore, Pierre worked as a handler in a market in Lille, enabling him to fund his trips and continue writing his weekly blog, which currently boasts 23,000 followers.


An adventure which is gaining momentum on human, professional and technical levels

By using this approach, which focusses on the technical know-how of beer making, Pierre has made some great encounters all over Europe: in Flanders, Paris, Brussels, London, Manchester, Oslo, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Barcelona, and more besides!

Professionally speaking, Pierre’s tour around Europe has also managed to set his mind at rest, now convinced he will one day be working in the world of craft beer. What’s more, it has allowed him to get a head start in finding his internships. “In January, I’ll be starting at Saveur Bière, the leading online beer store in Europe.” 

And finally, “I really enjoyed combining my brewing adventure with aspects related to the web/social networks and interfaces.”


So what’s next?

Pierre is now looking to tap into the project’s potential. "It’s all good when you finally manage to take time out during a key moment to head up a meaningful project. It may seem a bit weird in France, but it’s the norm in Scandinavian countries. I have now found out where I fit in and I hope this will put a smile on my face when I go to work in the mornings".

For more information: Facebook and the Website.



Katie François, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team


Around the globe

Black Friday, the latest sales event to hit France

Fast becoming a white hot shopping date in France

Retracing the history of Black Friday in France takes us back eight years to when it was first brought over by Amazon and Apple. Now the event forms an integral part of the French retail landscape and the proof is in the figures: in 2013, French online shoppers spent 482 million euros over Black Friday weekend. For 2018, online sales forecasts are set to reach 966 million euros, equating to an almost 100% increase in e-commerce over the past six years.

“Black Friday is a mammoth event for us here at l’Oréal, giving us an extra window of opportunity to win over new customers. Admittedly, our profit margins take a hit but it also generates a significant increase in sales. Today, Black Friday has become a mainstay with bargain hunters eagerly awaiting the date to make their purchases. What’s more, according to FEVAD (the federation of distance selling professionals) figures are very encouraging for the French market! A massive 80% of French e-shoppers are planning to make purchases during this period comprising an average shopping cart value of 180€!” explains Martin-Pierre Minaud (IMM 17), Online Brand Manager for L’Oréal Paris Makeup France.


Black Friday is changing the way we work

This event packs such a powerful retail punch that Martin-Pierre has been forced to alter his business plan.

“Today, Black Friday has become a red-letter day in retail, on a par with Christmas, Easter and back-to-school seasons. To achieve optimum sales figures, I make every effort to ensure that our web page content is on point, that the products are matched, there is makeup advice and I also buy publicity space a few days prior to attract new customers. Black Friday has completely revolutionised online trading!”

Furthermore, the number of online retailers taking part in the event is on the rise. This year, 57% of them were unleashing special Black Friday deals compared to only 22% in 2017.

This is just the beginning as henceforth Black Friday is set to become a week-long shopping bonanza and not just a one-day trading event. All this bodes well if you’re planning to grab yourself some great bargains!  



Géraldine Lance, Editor


Patronage & support

Daring together, your school campaign

From now until 31 December, our vast alumni network is being called upon to support projects which play a major role in enhancing the reach of the school. Together, your contributions stand to play a crucial role.

We are counting on our graduates’ fond memories to provide backing for the school’s ambitious goals: the original angle taken by our “Daring Together” campaign is being championed to rally support from alumni. But it’s not about misplaced nostalgia! It’s all about rekindling the spirit of the network whilst remaining mindful that the wealth of experience currently enjoyed by our present students was formerly experienced by countless past students during their time here.

Alumni and students: both share these unforgettable years spent at the school. They share a common bond forged when former students provided help for incoming students. Henceforth, past and future are inextricably linked.

The collection is network-wide and includes the participation of all class years. You are able to steer your donations towards three distinct categories of student support:

  • Social and cultural openness: grants are awarded to the most deserving talents.
  • Entrepreneurship: with the absence of any remuneration being a major roadblock to entrepreneurship, this concerns providing support for student entrepreneurs in the form of a grant for living expenses.
  • Open fund: the aim here is to set up a perennial fund to provide the school with support where funds are needed most. 

Your contribution plays a key role in promoting both the school and its network, for donations of €100 and above, we will have the pleasure of providing you with an epicurean souvenir of your time spent here at Audencia: a special vintage from your class graduation year. Sourced from Domaine de la Chevalerie and biodynamically produced, this wine has been selected by two of the school’s students within the framework of their company creation Monsieur W.

To get involved with the campaign, please head to



Guy-Pierre Chomette, Editor


Patronage & support

Learning expedition: on our way to the CES and Silicon Valley

In January, six students from Audencia will be heading out to Las Vegas and California to embark on their journey of inspiration at the Consumer Electronics Show, a trip organised and funded by alumni from the school.

Marked by experience gained during their own prior trips to the CES in Las Vegas, which provided them with much food for thought and turned out to be a great network-expanding opportunity, graduates from Audencia’s Dirigeants de l’Ouest Club (joining business leaders mainly based in Nantes and the west of France), have decided to take students from the school along with them this time. The chosen students heading out on this upcoming expedition to the United States are from courses and classes across the board.

The Audencia Foundation set up a collection in order to raise funds. Following a call for applications, 61 students presented their projects and explained their reasons in support of their bid during a two-phase selection process. In the end, six winners were chosen:  

  • Xi Jin, a Chinese student from the full-time MBA course, who has just started his own company (this project is still confidential)
  • Niels Rolland, a student on the Grande Ecole programme, who has recently joined forces with two friends from HEC and EDHEC to set up Ticoon “the first blockchain and decentralisation factory”
  • Fiona Ge Cao, a Chinese IMM student, who hopes to combine innovation, the food industry and CSR with her ‘cookie cup’ project
  • Romain Gardereau and Chloé Zirah, GE students working on a digital platform connecting psychologists and employees
  • Camille Gras, undergraduate student for whom this trip is:

"a golden opportunity for me to hone my expertise that I’ll then be able to apply to my project which centres on marketing and automation. It’s also a great way to learn from the graduates we’ll be meeting during our stay and that goes for those working in Silicon Valley as well as those who’ll be travelling with us from France".

In Las Vegas, the students will be in continuous contact with graduates and businesses. They will then fly out to Silicon Valley. On the programme, there will be company tours and meet-ups with the new San Francisco branch as part of a networking event. This enriching trip has all the hallmarks of a once in a lifetime experience for students who are in pursuit of professional references.



Guy-Pierre Chomette, Editor


Innovation hub

Overview of the food apps invading our lives and screens

You have no doubt noticed, and probably already become part of, this new healthy eating drive! In France 84% of consumers are genuinely concerned about what they eat and are constantly on the lookout for solutions to check what exactly is ending up on their plates. Greener, healthier, faster… there are dozens of food apps around which can help us move in this direction. Yuka, Bring, My Gourmet, Kwalito, Foodora and Youmiam are just a few of the big hitters.


Wherever I like, whenever I like, with whomever I like

As patterns of consumption are rapidly developing, food delivery in particular has become the main food tech investment hub (31%). Revenue is set to reach 5.3 billion euros by 2021 according to Kantar-Statista FR. In 2018, we want to eat wherever we like, whenever we like, with whomever we like.

To meet this rising demand, an increasing number of food distribution platforms have been set up.


One of these is Uber Eats and Hélène Hardy (EIBM 15) has been working there for the past two years as their key accounts manager.

“Consumers choose Uber Eats because they are seeking a healthy, affordable meal with fast delivery. We are operating in 40 towns and cities in France and this should expand to 60 by the end of this year.”


Wine is also in on the game 

It’s not just food getting a piece of the action when it comes to apps, the wine sector hasn’t been left behind! Vivineo, Delectable, Wine Advisor, Smart Cave or indeed Wine On Demand. In fact, the latter was founded in 2016 by one of our fellow Audencians, Quentin Bassi (GE 07).

After spending ten years in Paris working as a financial auditor, this wine enthusiast and foody met Paul-Adrien Le Garrec during a rugby match, and together they went on to launch Wine On Demand. It allows you to buy the wine you are enjoying with friends over dinner simply by scanning the label and within the space of a click, your purchase is being processed. Two years into the business and Quentin is proud to offer over 60,000 wines on Wine On Demand.

“Mobiles have totally revolutionised our day-to-day life. We now have easy access to information on producers at our fingertips and this is awesome!”

Given that food is one of the favourite topics of conversation in French society, particularly among young people on social networks, these apps stand to be around for many more wonderful years to come.



Géraldine Lance, Editor


Business Corner

Entrepreneurs who are making a difference in 2018

Velco, the FrenchTech start-up founded by three home-grown Audencians (Romain Savouré (GE 16), Pierre Régnier (GE 16) and Johnny Smith (GE 17)), has just succeeded in raising three million euros of capital to go towards stepping up their company growth. The Nantes business has devised the first ever connected handlebar which can be fitted onto any bike. So, what exactly is the ultimate goal of all this fundraising? Within the next three years, to help the company on its way to becoming the European leader in smarter connected bike mobility.

There is currently a wealth of creative talents launching themselves into the entrepreneurial world. In 2018, in the same way as Velco, they have also succeeded in creating their own start-ups, by raising business capital and launching their breakthrough product. All of them are Audencia graduates, with wide-ranging profiles and sensitivities, but they all share a common desire to break new ground within their respective markets.


Spotlight on some fellow Audencians marking this year…

  • One of our recent graduates, fresh out of our Grande Ecole Programme, Paul Cales (GE 18), has set his sights on revolutionising the technical content of live shows with his start-up Naostage
  • In very much the same spirit, we find Coline Mazeyrat (GE 11) and her Jho brand (tampons and sanitary towels made from organic cotton) that has come up with a product offering which was not previously catered for on the market
  • Frédéric Belhache (GE 88) started Invirtus Technologies, a new start-up rethinking the services related to geolocation. Before this, he had a career working as Financial Director in a range of companies
  • For Yves Le Gohebel (Exec MBA 08), at the helm of Connexing since 2009, his future business model would also take him down the road of innovation: he has developed a “connected bag”, which uses solar energy to recharge batteries

Discover their inspiring success stories!


Entrepreneurs to watch out for in 2019

2019 is just around the corner, and this year promises a plethora of upcoming initiatives!

  • Cyril Neves (GE 11) and his “Petits Bidons”, providing eco-friendly laundry detergents, 100% made in France
  • Mathilde Abjean (Bachelor 17), founder of Lunetik, a marketplace for second-hand glasses
  • Jérôme Pasquet (MBA 06), founder of Peek’in, a solution for returning items of lost property to their owner
  • Guillaume Odier (GE 17), at the helm of Captain Data, a solution allowing websites to be converted into a structured database
  • Aliaume Breteau (GE 16) & Jean-Baptiste de Chaisemartin (GE 16) for Bee HealthCare, an automated medical device for taking blood samples or inserting catheters.


If we haven’t mentioned your start-up yet, please contact the team to tell us all about your project 

  Jordi Soude (SciencesCom 07), editor & Amandine Luce, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team



Recent publications

“10 Golden Rules for Success”: detailed guidebook on the principles and mindset needed to realise your dreams.


In this book you will discover:

  • How to adopt the mindset of a conqueror
  • The secret to staying “hungry”
  • How to draw up your plan A, B and C in order to be free
  • Why you need to leave the herd behind
  • Why risk outweighs triviality
  • How to remain flexible and test out new opportunities
  • How to demonstrate an outstanding standard of quality
  • A great deal more besides!


In his entertaining and provocative manner, Antoine Bachelin Sena (MOS 09) shares his insights gained during experiences lived out realising his own dreams.

This book is available for purchase on Amazon.


Are you a graduate whose work has been published? We’d love to hear all about it so please drop us a few lines:



Emilie Tendron, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team


Appointments #5

Some fellow Audencians have changed post in recent months:

  • Pierre-Edouard De Lamy (GE 15) has been appointed Private Equity Analyst at RAISE Investissement
  • Fanny Guyomard (MAHTI 92) has been appointed Director of Senior Residences at Domitys 
  • Yann Hinsinger (GE 91) has been appointed Managing Director at BIZZBEE
  • Olivier Lopez (Audencia SciencesCom 09) has been appointed Commercial Director at La Chose agency 
  • Chloé Miller (GE 13) has been appointed Senior Associate at MBO Partenaires
  • Jean-Marc Pontroué (GE 86) has been appointed CEO of Officine Panerai
  • Constance Quenin (GE 15) has been appointed Associate at CM-CIC Consulting, Institute of corporate administration
  • Thomas Roulet (GE 09) has been appointed University Senior Lecturer in Organisation Theory at Cambridge Judge Business School and Fellow in Sociology & Management Studies at Girton College, Cambridge University
  • Sandrine Rudeaux (GE 93) has been appointed Associate with the Taj law firm


A fellow Audencian has set up their own company:


We would like to express our congratulations to each of you on these appointments and on the launch of this wonderful new business venture!

If you too would like to tell us about your recent appointment or new start-up, please drop us a line here:



Emilie Tendron, on behalf of the Audencia Alumni Team

The end

Thank you for reading the mag #5. If you liked it, let us know (we'll be happy to)! If you have any remarks and comments to improve it, let us know too, we will take them into account.

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