EDHEC

THE AGORA STUDENT SOCIETY WELCOMES AUGUSTIN PALUEL-MARMONT, CO-FOUNDER OF MICHEL ET AUGUSTIN

On Monday, 17 January, members of the Agora student society welcomed Augustin Paluel-Marmont, co-founder of famous French biscuit brand Michel et Augustin. Mr Paluel-Marmont gave EDHEC students his…

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1 Feb 2022
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On Monday, 17 January, members of the Agora student society welcomed Augustin Paluel-Marmont, co-founder of famous French biscuit brand Michel et Augustin. Mr Paluel-Marmont gave EDHEC students his recipe for entrepreneurial success.

In this exclusive presentation, the entrepreneur spoke with proud candour and infectious enthusiasm about his vision, his history and his expectations, as well as his inspiring career.

It was an exciting, highly enriching and direct address to the EDHEC students and curious members of the public who attended the event in the auditorium of the Lille campus.

THE CAREER OF AUGUSTIN PALUEL-MARMONT

After graduating from business school, Mr Paluel-Marmont got practical, on-the-ground training in a CAP Boulanger, before going on to create a company selling biscuits door to door.

In 2004, with his friend Michel de Rovira, he founded the Michel et Augustin brand, which brought a fresh approach to marketing and communications strategy in the agrifood industry.

Proximity, transparency and simplicity, but also friendship, sharing and humanism, are the pillars of this audacious brand, guided by responsible entrepreneurship.

In 2015, the brand began to export abroad, all the while considering the environment and any new societal issues arising from the production of its biscuits.

The entrepreneur explained to the EDHEC students the importance of a varied background and a wealth of internships and professional experience, even those of short duration. Mr Paluel-Marmont worked in various sectors before launching Michel et Augustin. His advice: “do as many things as possible in as short a time as possible, with passion, intelligence and commitment, to ultimately find the right platform for expressing your talent”.

A PASSIONATE ENTREPRENEUR

The passion that motivated the two entrepreneurs was clear: “to make the French want to re-discover the true taste of ingredients”. Indeed, Augustin Paluel-Marmont recalls that “in the 2000s, 99% of vanilla yogurts sold in supermarkets did not contain vanilla”.

Starting from this worrying observation and from a desire to “rehabilitate the handcraft professions and revalue them” ‒ and, of course, to start a company ‒ Augustin Paluel-Marmont and Michel de Rovira launched the concepts of “tribe”, “the banana plantation” (offices open to all) and “troublemakers of taste”. Another of its objectives was to “make a generation of French people want to be entrepreneurial” at a time when entrepreneurship was not so straightforward in France.

The Agora students, as well as the public, asked specific questions about his beliefs, his opinion on the anti-waste law, plastics, organics, diversity, being a leader, freeing up capital and, of course, about his brand’s marketing strategy, which aims to be joyful, creative and close to consumers.

A PASSION CAN HAVE A POSITIVE IMPACT

Mr Paluel-Marmont went up against the agrifood industry, a complex and traditional sector in the 2000s. Shaking things up in the sector proved tricky and very challenging, but the entrepreneur told the students that three values kept him going: “deep conviction, maximum coherence and total transparency”. This, he said, is the key to healthy and happy entrepreneurship.

Today, the entrepreneur is studying once again and intends, once he has graduated, to embark on another project.

To conclude, the co-founder of Michel et Augustin advised students and the public to “engage in the passions that drive you” but also to “meet people who interest you, it is something transformative and exceptional”.

Entrepreneurship, sharing and complementarity of skills are all ideas supported by the EDHEC Entrepreneurs team, which stands ready to help students bring their positive impact projects to fruition, in line with EDHEC’s strategic plan to Impact Future Generations.

 

Watch the conference on Agora's youtube channel

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