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A N G L O - F R E N C H


IN THIS ISSUE: Reports from the London Luxury Think Tank, including an interview with Robert Skinner, Executive Director of the United Nations Office for Partnerships An exclusive Brexit interview with Guillaume Bazard, Consul Général de France ‘Five Minutes with’ Nicola Lovett, CEO UK & Ireland, ENGIE And much more…


Fabienne Viala President, French Chamber of Great Britain Chairman of Bouygues UK and UK Country Director of Bouygues Construction


s we enter the summer months and a period of time reserved for well-earned rest and relaxation, I’m delighted to introduce you to this very special issue of INFO. It centres around a flagship event: the London Luxury Think Tank organised by the French

Chamber of Great Britain in partnership with Walpole, and with the sponsorship of PwC and HEC. This marks the second edition of the event, which was established in 2017 as a platform for high-level

engagement on topical issues between leaders, pioneers and disruptors from across the luxury sector. This year, the theme of sustainability was at the heart of the event, with the question ‘What makes luxury sustainable’ driving an agenda of talks, discussions and debates about the challenges and successes of an industry in transition. We were honoured to welcome the United Nations Office for Partnerships to the event this year as Official Partner, where we learned more from their Executive Director Robb Skinner about the Sustainable Development Goals and the need for their urgent application across the industry. This issue of the magazine reflects the key findings of the conference. Luxury brands are increasingly adopting sustainable business practices, while others are embarking on creative projects to connect with ethically-minded consumers. The twenty-page Focus section explores the sub-themes of reuse and recycling, sustainable production, and marketing and communication strategies, in addition to a wealth of other material examining the latest trends in the sector. Bringing together reports from keynote speakers, contributions from industry leaders, inspirational stories, I hope that this issue will be useful and, above all, provide you with a stimulating and thought -provoking read. As always, INFO is brimming with news and content from our member companies, as well as reports on the important work of the Chamber, including summaries of the Forum & Clubs and Events. This issue also continues our celebration of the 40th year of publication of the magazine with another feature looking back at past issues. I hope you enjoy this special issue and I look forward to seeing you in the autumn. I


- summer 2019 - 3


54 39

30 6 8 10 15 28 29

58 60 62 64 65

Five minutes with... Nicola Lovett, ENGIE Brexit: Analysis and look ahead Interview: Guillaume Bazard, Consul Général Business News Education News Reports & research



50 Culture: What's on 53 Book reviews by Institut Français 54 Feature: Manolo Blahnik at The Wallace Collection 56 Wine Story by Thibault Lavergne



68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75

Digital Transformation & Innovation Forum Employee Advocacy Digital Transformation & Innovation Forum AI: Does It Exist? Retail Forum GDPR: Twelve Months On Consumer Brands Forum Current & Future Consumer Trends Climate Change & Sustainability Forum The EU Emissions Trading System Finance Forum Digitisation of Finance Functions Luxury Club Thomas Pink Forthcoming Forums & Clubs



A N G L O - F R E N C H





30 Introduction 34 The New Sustainable Consumers Megan Higgins & Sue Rissbrook, PwC 36 Redefining Luxury Retail Matter of Form 38 A Positive Message for Fashion Caroline Rush, BFC 39 Slow Fashion Doina Ciobanu 40 A Role for Luxury in Sustainability Robert Skinner, United Nations 42 The Age of Resale James Harford-Tyrer, Cudoni 43 How to Build a Sustainable Brand Kresse Wesling, Elvis & Kresse 44 The Colour Connection Valérie Corcias, mycoocoon 45 Rethinking Aftercare Mathilde Blanc, Blanc 46 Lab vs Mine? De Beers & Swarovski 47 Diamonds Under the Loupe Alessandro Borruso, Southeby's Diamonds 48 LLTT: Sustainable Start-up Award 49 Winner Interview: Hurr Collective

Introduction by Florence Gomez Annual General Meeting INFO 40: A Look Back at Luxury Business Centre Interview Empreinte Signs New Members








Reports from the London Luxury Think Tank, including an interview with Robert Skinner, Executive Director of the United Nations Office for Partnerships, an exclusive Brexit interview with Guillaume Bazard, Consul Général of France in the UK, ‘Five Minutes with’ Nicola Lovett, CEO UK & Ireland, ENGIE And much more…

Managing Director: Florence Gomez Editor: Jakob von Baeyer Cover & Graphic Design: Katherine Millet Assistant Editor & Production Manager: Suzanne Lycett Publications Assistant: Marie Koziol Contributors: Robert Skinner, Caroline Rush, Mathilde Blanc, Doina Ciobanu, Kresse Wesling, James Harford-Tyrer, Megan Higgins, Sue Rissbrook, Matter of Form, Valerie Corcias, Dr Xavier Bray, Alessandro Borruso, Suzanne Lycett, Marie Koziol, Thibault Lavergne


76 77 78 79 81

Breakfast with Barrett West, Tiffany & Co. Seminar with Aurexia Jardin Blanc & Dîner des Chefs Past event highlights Henry Moore; London Philharmonic Orchestra; Rendez-vous chez EOL Group; Rendez-vous chez Bell & Ross; Rendez-vous chez The Mandeville Hotel; PA Club at Hyatt Regency London Forthcoming events

Advertise in INFO: Please call our sales team on +44 (0)207 092 6651. Alternatively, please email: INFO is published every two months Printed by: CPI Colour Distribution: French Chamber members, Franco-British decision makers, Business Class lounges of Eurostar, Eurotunnel and Air France in London, Paris and Manchester

INFO is published by: French Chamber of Great Britain Lincoln House, 300 High Holborn London WC1V 7JH Tel: (020) 7092 6600 Fax: (020) 7092 6601


- summer 2019 - 5

Five minutes with...

Nicola Lovett CEO UK & Ireland, ENGIE

INFO speaks with the energy and services company boss on her priorities for digital transformation and achieving net zero-carbon Tell us about ENGIE’s activities in the UK.

supplying energy. In fact, by 2020 close to 50 percent of our

ENGIE is an energy and services company focused on three

UK revenues will come from business, which combines these

key activities: production and supply of energy, facilities

elements together. Energy will also increasingly become

management of buildings and the shaping of places through

embedded directly in buildings and places - produced and

regeneration. We employ over 17,000 people across the UK

stored locally, with smart optimisation. Much of this is being

who combine these capabilities for the benefit of individuals,

driven by technology and analytics and creates opportunity on

businesses and communities. Our aim is to improve lives

a massive scale.

through better living and working environments, balancing performance with responsibility. Our business has grown rapidly in recent years with

By combining our core activities, I believe we are well positioned to take advantage of these changes and provide long-term, value-adding solutions for our customers.

strong development in areas such as energy efficiency and renewables, particularly offshore wind, as well as through the

What are the challenges of a company with such a

integration of strategic acquisitions. These include Keepmoat’s

diversified portfolio of activities?

regeneration business in 2017, which created a leader in local

What people might perceive as our biggest challenge – the size

authority placemaking, and also a number of smart building

and scale of our operations – I actually see as an opportunity.

and digital companies, which help us enhance building

Being a large business across many sectors means that many

efficiency and user experience. Last month we completed the

of our customers often only ever know ENGIE for a singular

acquisition of an electric vehicle public charging network and

activity. Within our complimentary range of capabilities there is

solutions provider ChargePoint Services, which will allow us to

often much more we could do to help customers.

further our ambitions in this market. The unique combination of our activities will assist us with

For example, you can unlock much greater value for a customer by managing the whole process of operating

our ambition to help make the zero-carbon transition possible

an entire building, or portfolio – across energy, facilities

for companies and local authorities across the UK.

management and the lifecycle requirements of their estate. Bringing together our skills and expertise in more than one

What major trends are you seeing your own markets?

area enables us to deliver tailored customer-led solutions and

The markets in which we operate, especially the energy

helping them to achieve their goals.

industry, have changed dramatically in recent years. The

Our teams work hard to leverage all of the expertise

‘energy transition’ has seen a shift towards a decarbonised,

available across the Group to meet the unique needs of a

decentralised and digitalised energy system. We are now

customer and enable them to benefit from synergy between

experiencing the second wave of this transition, the necessary

activities, or deep sector expertise that has been developed

drive towards zero-carbon, or net-zero.

over many years.

The future will still require investment in flexible and renewable energy infrastructure, but at a local level this will

ENGIE is active in digital transformation and smart cities.

be delivered alongside cost-effective services, as part of a

How can we ensure that these new technologies and

broader integrated solution. We have seen a real convergence

solutions are also environmentally sustainable?

in energy and services activity for our customers meaning

From the outset, our customers want environmentally

that there is now more value in energy reduction than in

sustainable solutions – that is, where our focus increasingly

6 - info - summer 2019

F I V E M I N U T E S W I T H . . . N I CO L A L O V E T T

lies and where we believe our future growth will be. Our

What other priorities do you have for the business going

ambition is to be a leader in providing a service that helps


businesses and local authorities in the transition to zero

UK energy and service companies are facing evermore


public scrutiny of their business and so for ENGIE to show

The fabric of cities is changing through the evolution of

leadership in responsible business practice is something I

buildings, the adoption of smart technology bringing greater

feel very strongly about. To that end we have established a

energy efficiency and the inclusion of embedded PV, battery

formal Responsible Business Charter last year and appointed

storage capabilities and smart grids. Green mobility solutions

an independent Scrutiny Board, chaired by Lord Kerslake to

will require energy to be incorporated within homes and

oversee our progress. The Charter ensures transparency and


accountability on critical issues including supplier payments,

Today two percent of new cars sold in the UK are ultralow emission - to meet climate changes commitments, this needs to be 60 percent by 2030. In the green mobility space,

pension obligations, environmental and social responsibility, living wage, diversity and inclusion. In terms of growth, I mentioned them before, but there

we are currently working with over 30 local authorities, as well

are two areas, both enablers of a successful transition to a

forecourt owners and retailers to increase access to public

zero-carbon economy that we see as a continued priority

charging facilities. This growing charge point network requires

to develop. They are smart building technology in homes,

a significant digital infrastructure.

businesses and places and also the deployment of electric

We are also supporting cities and local authorities by

vehicle infrastructure. Finally, but perhaps most importantly,

looking at societal trends such as an aging population and

retaining a strong focus on our employees will always remain

the types of solutions that they will require. Not only will this

a priority. We are committed to many employee engagement

be achieved through the provision of age-adaptable living

activities, such as career development, training and employee

solutions – such as ENGIE’s retirement living developments,

benefits, in order to support staff retention and also to attract

but also by using technology to enable people to live

the best talent in our markets. An engaged workforce is the

independently for longer, easing the burden on social care.

key factor for any successful business.

ENGIE is able to deliver smart city solutions, encompassing localised energy supply and green transport infrastructure as

How has Brexit impacted your business or decision-

well as optimising the efficiency and usage of buildings.

making? We do not anticipate a significant impact from Brexit on

How does your work complement recently announced UK

ENGIE’s UK business. The decision to leave the EU has also

government targets to achieve net zero carbon emissions

not affected our view of the market or our capacity to develop

by 2050?

our business within the country.

As a signatory to the open letter from business to the

We remain committed to the UK and will continue to invest

Government, I was delighted to see the recent move to

here to meet the needs and expectations of our current and

legislate for net-zero in the UK by 2050.

future clients. Since the referendum was taken in 2016, ENGIE

ENGIE is very closely aligned with this ambition. Both globally and in the UK we are committed to working with our

has made several significant investments in the UK in areas including offshore wind, regeneration services, digital and EV.

customers to deliver programmes to achieve net-zero carbon emissions. We will deploy technology and digital solutions to

What does being a Patron member of the French Chamber

reduce energy consumption and improve energy efficiency

mean for ENGIE?

– and importantly look to, in some cases, finance this for our

ENGIE is a large UK business with 17,000 employees, but


being part of an international Group, we still have a strong

I believe that 2050 is realistic as a national target;

French heritage and close ties with our parent company in

however, we are committed to supporting businesses and

France. The Chamber is a great vehicle to network with senior

local authorities to achieve the transition much sooner where

business stakeholders, many of whom are from multi-national

possible. At a more local level, cities including Glasgow and

companies like ourselves. It can also provide us with valuable

Edinburgh are striving to be the first net-zero city in the UK by

support and insight on topical issues as well as access to key

2030 and major companies such as BT (2045) and Carlsberg

relevant events and forums. Post Brexit, the French Chamber

(2030) have made pledges that will deliver net-zero many years

will also have a critical role in maintaining and supporting the

before the national target.

strong industrial and commercial relationship between France and the UK. I Interview by JvB


- summer 2019 - 7

Analysis and look ahead INFO looks at the latest news on Brexit and its impact on the Franco-British community


rexit continues to dominate the UK political landscape,

eurozone. ‘At some point the slowdown may reach bottom, and

and specifically the Conservative leadership race, which

we want to have the monetary instruments in place to avoid

has whittled down to two candidates at the time of printing.

this becoming a recession,’ says Societe Generale SA Chairman

Boris Johnson, former Foreign Secretary and MP for Uxbridge

Lorenzo Bini Smaghi.

and South Ruislip, is the clear frontrunner, with Jeremy Hunt,

Leadership in the EU is changing, too. But there are no signs

Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, the

that negotiations will be re-opened, as some have said would be

bookies’ longshot.

possible. Outgoing President of the European Council, Donald

The prize is a seemingly unenviable one. With growth

Tusk, said ‘I am absolutely sure that the new leaders of our

slowing in the UK as the Brexit deadline of 31 October looms

institutions will be as consistent as we are today when it comes

and ‘recession’ is being bandied about in hushed tones. The

to the withdrawal agreement.’

CBI predicts that Britain is heading for the biggest decline in business investment since the 2008 financial crisis.

Both Johnson and Hunt aim to renegotiate the withdrawal agreement. And have said publicly that they are prepared to leave with no-deal, if necessary. Four months until the deadline

In Germany, factory orders slumped in May. The UK’s plan to leave the EU is playing its part in raising economic risks in the

seems increasingly short, considering the almost three years it’s taken to get to here. I

Key dates 25 July - Tory leadership

22 September - 2 October - Party

31 October - New Brexit deadline



The six-month article 50 extension

Expected deadline for a new

Conferences for Labour and

should expire on this date.

Conservative leader to be installed.

Conservative parties, held on consecutive weeks.

If there is no prospect of a deal that can get through Parliament, then I will leave at the end of October because that is our democratic promise to the British people JEREMY HUNT, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, on 30 June 8 - info - summer 2019

[Our partners] have to look deep into our eyes and think, my god, these Brits actually are going to leave. And they're going to leave on those terms BORIS JOHNSON, MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, on 6 July

Sponsored by

Brexit Forum update The latest session of the Brexit Forum gathered and heard reassurance on the importance of the business voice in negotiations


he UK was supposed to leave the EU on 29 March. This deadline was

pushed back to 12 April and again to 31 October. The Forum session on 9 May, intended to be the first postBrexit session, found itself once again discussing from the UK’s tenuous position still within the EU framework. Susannah Storey, Director General at DExEU, and Christian Fatras,

Economic Counsellor of the French Embassy, were present to comment on developments. The session was co-chaired by Angela Hepworth,

relationship going forwards. This

digital, the circular economy etc should

Corporate Policy and Regulation

shouldn’t undermine the single market.

be maintained.

Director, EDF Energy and Neil Sherlock

A new balance must be found.

CBE, Senior Advisor, PwC.

The short timescale for negotiations

Fatras references the Gravity Theory of Trade: countries are attracted

is a key concern. To meet the deadline,

to other countries of a similar size

The story so far

negotiations will likely take place in

(GDP) and proximity (trade costs). The

Susannah Storey highlights the progress

parallel. Each policy area will meet their

emerging markets may therefore not

that has been made in negotiations.

counterpart department in order to

offer a concrete alternative to trade

These have developed sequentially.

advance rapidly.

with mainland Europe. He says the UK’s

First, the core of the withdrawal

Storey emphasises that the

natural partners are on the continent.

agreement was set. Second, the

government would like to create

outline of a political declaration is

further engagement with the business

Macron has taken a strong stance

being developed, but currently has no

community to hear their concerns

during negotiations. But Fatras says


through forums such as the Chamber’s.

this is in order to provide a fresh start.

However, the government cannot easily

With new people in the EU parliament,

218 is now of key importance. This

advise on the long-term for businesses

commission and central bank, it’s best

defines what relationship the UK wants

until the future relationship deal has

to start on a new basis.

with the EU and what the EU wants

been ratified.

Over and above Article 50, Article

from the UK. However, the outline is

French President Emmanuel

However, he also comments on the fact that we are commemorating the

theoretical as there is currently no

The French perspective

75th anniversary of the D-Day landings

parliamentary consensus. This reflects

Christian Fatras underlines the

this year. He says that ‘Symbolism is

the conflicting sentiments of the country

economic importance of the current

strong in the UK.’ To maintain the strong

at large on the best route to take.

Franco-British relationship. There is a

relationship between our nations,

Storey comments that the two

trade surplus of €13bn with the UK; on

he says that we should focus on this

entities have been very integrated

average this surplus is €6-8bn. Bilateral

historical bond, rather than the daily

and now need to define a stable deep

relations for key sectors such as energy,

discussions around Brexit. I

The government cannot easily advise on the long-term for businesses until the future relationship deal has been ratified info

- summer 2019 - 9

Interview with...

Guillaume Bazard Consul Général

In this exclusive interview with INFO magazine, Guillaume Bazard, the French Consul Général, speaks about Brexit and the impact on French citizens in the UK


he French Consulate General in London is one of the largest

has been decided in rules. Not in legislation but in secondary

French consulates in the world. It takes care of the French

legislation – which is an issue in itself – however, there is no

community in the UK on a day-to-day basis, by issuing passports

reason to think that it will not continue to be in place in the

and IDs, and registering births, marriages and deaths. They

future for the people who are here now. The immigration rules

administer elections – recently setting up 36 polling stations

for the people who will arrive later is another story.

across the country for the European MEPs – and issue visas

I don’t see it as likely that the government would suddenly

for foreign visitors to France. Last year, they issued roughly

change and give up on settled status, but there might be

125,000 visas, of which the majority went to Chinese or Indian

adjustments. Our responsibility is to see what is on the table

citizens living in the UK. Guillaume Bazard took up his role as

and what is open to the public. We ensure sure that French

Consul Général on 3 September 2018.

people are aware of the rules and encourage them to apply.

What impact has Brexit had on your activities at the

How many applications for settled status have been made


so far?

Brexit has brought an increase in all of our activities. What we

The Home Office published statistics in June, which showed

call ‘Etat Civil’ (civil registration of French citizens living in the

that 788,000 Europeans living in the UK have applied for

UK) has increased. In the past, many French nationals living

settled status. We have more detailed statistics up to 31 May,

here didn’t find it necessary to register their marriages or the

where the figures are broken down by nationality. These

births of their children to the French Consulate.

show that 32,300 French people have applied, which is a little

Brexit caused them to think twice, because suddenly they

bit less than 20 percent of the number of registered French

did not know what was going to happen. There has also been

people in the UK. And it’s probably less in percentage if we’re

a huge increase in issuing passports. To illustrate the point,

talking about what we think is the total French population in

last year we issued 37,000 passports and IDs. Each year since

the country.

the referendum result, we have issued an increase of ten percent.

This means that a good proportion of people are informed and taking it seriously. For the rest, they have time, at least until the 31 December 2020 if there is no deal, and 31 June

Are you confident that settled status is a long-term

2021 if the deal is approved. There’s no hurry, there’s no panic.

solution for French citizens living in the UK?

But we have to continue our efforts to inform people and to

When we talk about Brexit, certainty is something that is quite

reach out to those who are difficult to contact – which is my

difficult to comment on. But as things are today, settled status

main concern.

10 - info - summer 2019

If you would like to stay, apply for the settled status. The only scenario in which you wouldn’t have to do it is if Brexit doesn’t happen – and that would be a risky thing to rely on

community has stalled. What have you been hearing from the French community

Plus, it is important to remember that the measurement of

here in terms of concerns or of optimism?

the number of French people living in the UK is imperfect. For

We’ve been hearing that the results of the referendum came

example, when you have an increase in the number, it’s not

as a shock. This is something that took me a little time to

necessarily due to people arriving. It can be people who have

understand, what we might call the psychological dimension.

been here for a long time and who have decided to register.

We have a tendency to see things through the London

The data is not straightforward in terms of its interpretation.

community, because 60 percent of our community is in the London region. But that also means that a lot of people live

What are your priorities in terms of the messages you

outside London in quite different conditions then we see here.

would like to communicate to the French community?

In some places where the Brexit vote was strong, it has

Message number one is: If you would like to stay, apply for

been an unpleasant experience. They were happy and felt

the settled status. But it comes with some context. You have

welcome, and have been raising their children here. Suddenly

time to do it, but don’t doubt you will have to do it. The only

they found themselves in the position of questioning if they

scenario in which you wouldn’t have to do it is if Brexit doesn’t

were still welcome. This is why the psychological dimension is

happen – and that would be a risky thing to rely on.

very important to consider.

The other message I would like to communicate is: Help us spread the information. Our community is large and diverse,

Have French citizens taken the decision to leave the UK as a result?

and we fear that the message will not reach everyone. It is a concern that all the European consulates have right

We would like to have a scientific way to measure what’s

now, when attempting to reach more vulnerable parts of their

happening within the French community. The only instrument

communities. Some may have limited access to information

we have are monitoring the changes in the number of French

or may not be perfectly literate in English or lack digital skills,

people registered from one period to another. Our latest

which are important as the process to apply for settled status

figures from the 31 December 2018 show 146,000 registered

is online. Please help spread the message. I

French people. Compare that to one year before, it represents

Interview by JvB

a 0.8 percent decrease in registrations. We can therefore confidently say that there has not been

For information in French about Brexit visit the French

an exodus of French people, but there has been a change in

government portal:

the normal trends. We used to have an increase every year by

To apply for Settled Status:

roughly this same percentage. Obviously, the growth of this



- summer 2019 - 11

Sanofi: Beyond Brexit Hugo Fry, Managing Director, Sanofi UK, details the challenges and opportunities for businesses in a post-Brexit landscape, including stockpiling, regulatory changes and talent attraction


or the last two years, Sanofi, along with thousands of

However, without doubt, the biggest concern for us is the

companies across hundreds of industries, dedicated many

continued uncertainty. Once we know what we are facing in

hours preparing for the UK to leave the European Union. The

the longer term, then we can work to ensure our treatments

main focus of all this work was to ensure we did all we could to

can continue to reach people in the UK as quickly as possible;

limit the impact for people across the UK, and other parts of

both existing medicines and vaccines and also those in our

the world, who rely on access to our products.

pipeline and beyond.

Much of that activity, especially for the pharmaceutical

Our focus is increasingly turning to the impact beyond

industry was on stockpiling. Since the 29 March 2019 deadline

Brexit. One of these focal points, is the need to ensure that

passed with no departure, we have been asked many times

the UK remains a leader in innovation. Access to world-class

how we will manage that stockpile going forward and how long

research and development, and the ability to attract the best

we can continue to keep it at the additional levels required by

talent, is essential to any global organisation that wants to

the Government. Our plans had always been to maintain the

remain competitive in the 21st century.

additional level of stock for around 12 months. So, providing

The UK is currently a hotbed for medical innovation. We

we leave the EU in October, as is now expected, there is no

have world-leading universities, a highly-skilled workforce

need for additional plans. And, of course, additional stockpiling

and have made discoveries that have a huge impact for

was an action taken to manage the situation if the UK leaves

people and patients all across the world. However, it is crucial

the EU without a deal. If an agreement is negotiated, there will

that we maintain momentum. We must collaborate across

be no need for mitigating plans to protect against disruption

government, businesses and academia to ensure that the UK

to the flow of medicines and vaccines in and out of the UK.

can maintain its position as a leader in world-class research and development, especially as we move forward in a post Brexit landscape. Another area of focus is the regulatory process and how that will work when we are no longer part of the European Medicines Agency process. At Sanofi, we believe that there is potential for exciting and encouraging regulatory processes, which could support the UK to remain as a leader in innovation. We recently worked with the UK regulatory body, the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on a fast track national review of one of our vaccines. The process took just seven months, compared with a standard review time of 12 months for national approvals. This expedited process showed that MHRA can be flexible and agile in their ways of working and could provide opportunities for faster product approvals when the UK leaves the EU. So, whilst we know there are challenges ahead for our industry as well as many others in the UK, we feel confident that there will also be opportunities.

Access to world class research and development, and the ability to attract the best talent, is essential to any global organisation who wants to remain competitive in the 21st century 12 - info - summer 2019

With over 1,200 employees based here, we recently announced that we will be opening a new head office based in Reading in the Summer of 2019. This investment shows that Sanofi is absolutely committed to the UK and see it is a key market in achieving our mission to protect, enable and support people on their health journey. What is critical now is that all the players in the life sciences ecosystem work together to support investment in homegrown innovation. I

M&A and Brexit According to Geraldine Fabre, Partner and Head of French Group at Sherrards Solicitors, levels of corporate transactions remain high across the UK despite the uncertainties caused by Brexit. Here, she explores some of the issues that require particular attention from a general counsel and finance director whether your business is located in France or the UK

Mergers & acquisitions (M&A) Brexit is unlikely to have a major impact on share sale transactions unless they are affected by competition regulation, as they are typically not subject to much EU law or regulation. Asset and business sales may be affected if the regulations which protect the rights of employees on a business transfer are affected. Privacy and transfer of data to the UK As it stands, the UK will become a 'third

some uncertainties under a number

and trade/VAT/import papers should be

country' for the purposes of GDPR.

(limited) of EU regulations.

in place.

Additional measures will be required

From the exit day, the EU cross-border

to continue legitimate personal data

mergers regime will no longer be

Employing UK nationals in Europe

transfers to the UK in an acquisition of,

available to UK companies. EU member

In case of a 'no deal,' unless special

say, a French company. A decision from

states will also no longer have to

arrangements are put into place by a EU

the EU which would enable continued

implement cross-border mergers that

Member State, employing and recruiting

transfer based on 'adequacy' is not

are not completed before exit day.

new UK nationals in Europe will require

expected on short notice. Until then,

work and residence permits. Each EU

business will need to use EC Standard

Intellectual property rights and

country is currently setting out their own

Model Clauses. However, these clauses

parallel imports

set of rules.

do not cover all circumstances.

Without a deal, the UK will no longer benefit






Increased scrutiny on EU and UK

Merger control

exhaustion, which prohibits IP rights

foreign investments

Post-Brexit, the current EU 'one-stop

holders from enforcing their rights in

Outside Brexit, foreign ownership and

shop' for antitrust filings will no longer

respect of the resale of goods originally

investment with rules are the subject of

cover the UK. This not only means that

sold with their permission, as long as

increased scrutiny, such as (a) for the UK,

you may have a separate obligation

both sales occur within the territory of

the verification of the ultimate beneficial

to apply for and await merger control

the EU. This will give more opportunities

owners (UBOs) of English registered

clearance before closing in both the

to block parallel imports for EU members.

companies and the proposed regulations

EU and the UK, but also that conflicting outcomes are possible.

surrounding the ownership of land; Cross-border resellers

and (b) for the EU, the forthcoming EU

UK businesses which import products

Foreign Direct Investment Regulations.

EU corporate entities and EU mergers

from the EEA will acquire new obligations

Brexit is unlikely to have a major effect

towards consumers on exit day for de-

Drafting will change

on UK company law as this is an area

fective products they import under the


of EU law that is largely left to individual

no-fault regime, which, until then, only

agreements will need to be updated so

member states to regulate. It could,

applied to 'first importers' into the EU.

that any reference to EU legislation still

however, affect the ability of UK-based

They will also take on the responsibili-

works and clauses such as termination,

companies to use European company

ties of 'producers' under the UK General

governing law and jurisdiction are not

structures and if the UK leaves with no

Product Safety Regulation 2005. Distrib-

affected. Older contracts should also be

transition period, there were will be

utors’/resellers’ insurance documents

reviewed and, if necessary, amended. I





- summer 2019 - 13



Don’t settle for black and white For the full perspective, turn to the FT Visit




The Notre-Dame blaze has both united the nation and divided opinion


otre Dame is a symbol of France. In a secular nation,

the destruction of the place of worship, during the holy week of Easter no less, touched a chord. An outpouring of emotion ensued. This was swiftly followed by an outpouring of financial support. Heads of leading companies from across the globe pledged large sums, with figures exceeding €1bn in total. LVMH and L’Oréal topped

the list with €200M pledged apiece. Other industries, from construction (Bouygues, Saint-Gobain, VINCI) to banking (BNP Paribas, Societe Generale,



donated sizeable amounts. Some pledged services to the efforts. Air France offered flights to all official participants in

donations in France, raising questions about the taxpayer

its reconstruction. JCDecaux offered its creative services and

footing part of the bill.

ad spaces for promotion of the fund-raising efforts.

However, Bernard Arnault, CEO of LVMH, stated that the

Pledges come not just from the top. Employees play their

luxury brand would not receive a tax deduction, revealing

own part in raising the restauration funds. ‘Air France-KLM

that his LVMH Foundation had already hit the ceiling for

group set up a voluntary donations fund for its customers to

deductions and was no longer able to claim additional

help finance the reconstruction work’, says Benedicte Duval,


General Manager for Air France-KLM in the UK & Ireland.

Similarly, Kering CEO Francois-Henri Pinault, whose family

JCDecaux has pledged to match the total of all employee

donated €100m said that French taxpayers shouldering part

donations to the funds.

of the burden was ‘out of the question.’

Despite these charitable actions, criticism of the

With inequalities in society already flagged by the ongoing

companies contributing has been raised, across social media

Yellow Vest street protests, parallels were also drawn by

platforms, and by key social groups, such as the influential

commentators on social media to another blaze, London’s

French trade organisation CGT Union.

Grenfall Tower, where funds were raised primarily by local

At the time of the blaze, Notre Dame was already undergoing renovations, for which it had struggled to raise the €150M in funds for the repairs.

communities, not companies. Contributing companies state solidarity as the main reason for their charity. ‘An international company born in

Shortly after the blaze, a member of the National

France, we wanted to be in solidarity with the national effort

Assembly confirmed that, ‘out of nearly €700m [pledged

to rebuild this masterpiece of the heritage of humanity,’ says

Tuesday], nearly €420, will be financed by the state, by way of

Paul Hermelin, Chairman and CEO of the Capgemini Group.

the 2020 budget.’ The funds received from the private sector were also eligible for tax exemption at 60 percent, as applied to cultural

Regardless of the reasons, the end result is the same. A nationwide effort to raise a French symbol from the ashes to its former glory. I SL


- summer 2019 - 15

Morgan Lewis earns top patent prosecution ranking

Morgan Lewis is recognised as a global patent prosecution leader in analytics-based intellectual property company Patexia’s recently released Patent Prosecution Intelligence Report, which ranks law firms and other companies based on their patent filing activity and performance before the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) during a five-year period.

AccorHotels tops Honors from the Forbes Travel Guide

Accor brand hotels received a total of 51 awards in the Forbes Travel Guide 2019 Global Star Ratings, recognising the world’s finest hotels, restaurants and spas. They are delighted by the acclaimed recognition that our AccorHotels luxury and premium brands received in all categories: Five-Star Rating, Four-Star Rating and Forbes Travel Guide Recommended.

Ardian acquires stake in recruitment platform Uptoo

Airbus and Orbital Insight launch Earth Monitor to provide geopolitical and economic insights

Airbus Defence and Space and Orbital Insight have partnered to create Earth Monitor, a powerful change analysis and insights service, which leverages Orbital Insight’s machine learning and computer vision expertise through powerful algorithms that detect changes in infrastructure and land use in near real-time, as well as identify and count cars, trucks and soon, aircraft. I

GFG Alliance acquires bank to trade with emerging markets British industrialist, Sanjeev Gupta, has completed his acquisition of Diamond Bank UK as part of a strategy to help UK businesses trade internationally, especially with emerging and Commonwealth markets. Diamond Bank UK, which was previously the British subsidiary of Diamond Bank PLC of Nigeria, will be renamed ‘the Commonwealth Trade Bank’ and will add to the financial services offering within Mr Gupta’s global GFG Alliance,

Ardian, a world-leading private investment house, announced today that it has taken a minority stake in Uptoo, the leading sales representative recruitment platform in France. Ardian’s investment will help support and accelerate Uptoo’s growth, particularly through external growth opportunities.

Bouygues Construction wins contract for Brighton University campus

The University of Brighton has awarded Bouygues Construction a 50-year contract for the financing, design, construction, maintenance, operation and life-cycle management of a new student residence on its largest campus, located in Moulsecoomb in the north of the city. 16 - info - summer 2019

comprising metals, industrials, energy, finance and property businesses. I

Cripps Pemberton Greenish advises Safic-Alcan in acquisition of Langley-Smith & Company for Newcastle The acquisition of Langley-Smith strengthens Safic-Alcan's position as a leader in chemicals distribution in the UK and Ireland and will enable the company to expand its capabilities in continental Europe. Olivier Morel, Partner and International Director, and Erin Willock, Senior Associate, led the team in charge of advising Safic-Alcan on all legal aspects of the acquisition. I


Christie's honoured by Webby Awards

Sotheby's to be acquired by BidFair USA

Christie’s announced today that it has been honored for Best

Sotheby’s announced that it has signed a definitive merger

Video in the Branded Entertainment, Unscripted Category as

agreement to be acquired by BidFair USA, an entity wholly

part of the 23rd Annual Webby Awards. The video, ‘Capturing

owned by media and telecom entrepreneur as well as art

a feeling of creation: Jeff Koons on Play-Doh' features works

collector, Patrick Drahi. The transaction would result in

in Koons’ Celebration Series, which includes contemporary

Sotheby’s returning to private ownership after 31 years as a

icons Balloon Dog, Hanging Heart and Tulips. I

public company traded on the New York Stock Exchange. I

LVMH announces signature of a five-year partnership with UNESCO

Consistent with its longstanding commitment to biodiversity and following the conclusions of the 7th plenary session of the Intergovernmental Science Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), LVMH is teaming with UNESCO as a partner to the agency’s Man and Biosphere (MAB) intergovernmental scientific programme, which aims to safeguard biodiversity across the planet. I

Guerlain holds third edition of Bee University In conjunction with the International Day for Biodiversity, Guerlain organised the third edition of its Bee University programme to identify the best solutions to protect and preserve bees. The event was part of the Man and Biosphere (MAB) conference held at UNESCO to mark the International Day for Biodiversity. Bees have been an inspiration for Guerlain since 1853, emblazoning the Maison’s most precious perfume bottles. I

Grace Kelly exhibition at Musée Christian Dior The Musée Christian Dior in Granville retraces the story of the friendship between the princess and the Paris haute couture House. Grace of Monaco, Princess in Dior showcases nearly 90 dresses worn by the former Hollywood star during both public appearances and on private occasions. I


- summer 2019 - 17

Eurostar provides guide to help travellers with autism

Deloitte named top gender equality employer

Eurostar, the high-speed passenger rail service linking the

Deloitte has been recognised by Business in the Community

UK with mainland Europe, launches a new 360° virtual guide

(BITC) as one of the top 50 employers for women in the UK

to help travellers with autism have a smooth and stress-free

for the fourth consecutive year. In addition, Deloitte has

journey, in a first for the travel industry. Eurostar worked

been awarded a prestigious Gender Equality Game Changer

with charity Ambitious About Autism to carry out a review of

Award; this award recognises the firm’s relentless focus on

its travel experience for autistic passengers. I

respect and inclusion since 2015. I

Pinsent Masons named Top 50 Employer for Women Pinsent Masons is listed in The Times Top 50 Employers for Women' report. The endorsement is a recognition of Pinsent Masons' commitment to diversity and inclusion and follows the firm's recent ranking as Stonewall's most LGBT-inclusive employer 2019. I

Veolia calls for stricter air quality guidelines

Morgan Lewis has earned six practice rankings and 12 individual lawyer rankings across fourteen categories in the Belgium, France, Russia, and United Kingdom sections of the newly released Chambers Europe 2019 guide. I

Thales Alenia Space wins HR award

Thales Alenia Space has won the 2019 Randstad Globe Award in Italy for inspiring work content, and was also named the country’s fourth most attractive employer, by potential employees. These awards are sponsored by Randstad, the world’s leading Human Resources services company, and recognise the companies that are most attractive to employees, based on the results of large-scale branding surveys. I

AXA launches farm safety website

AXA UK is launching a risk management website to help farmers stay safe. Unveiled at the British Insurance Brokers’ Association conference in Manchester, Home Safely is an online tool that has been designed with the support of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Agriculture has the highest rate of fatal injury of all industry sectors. I

Dassault Systèmes tech in Renault electric vehical trials

Dassault Systèmes announced that the in-house LCI (Cooperative Innovation Laboratory) of Groupe Renault used the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to transform its innovation processes to the cloud and introduce Renault EZ-FLEX, an electric experimental vehicle aimed to understand the last-mile delivery of goods in smart cities. I

Louis Vuitton publishes collector's edition of Arles guidebook

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Arles Photography Festival, Louis Vuitton is publishing a collector’s edition of its Arles City Guide, paying tribute to the city, its people, and photography. Louis Vuitton is also hosting a pop-up bookstore during the festival at a wine bar, featuring special events and book signings. I 18 - info - summer 2019


ENGIE partners with EDP creating global offshore wind player

EDP and ENGIE announce the signing of a strategic Memorandum of Understanding, to create a co-controlled 50/50 joint-venture in fixed and floating offshore wind. The new entity will become a global top-5 player in the field, bringing together the industrial expertise and development capacity of both companies. I

Natixis supports sustainable finance loan

Natixis acted as mandated arranger, sole coordinator, bookrunner and sustainable development coordinator for a credit facility with twelve French and international top-tier banking partners. The initiative brings French and international banks together– led by Natixis – for this first syndicated loan signed by a pure player in renewables.

Sopra Steria wins UK Cloud Awards

BNP Paribas partners with Magic Leap and Mimesys BNP Paribas announced their adoption of new immersive

technologies by Magic Leap and Mimesys, including Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality or Mixed Reality. This innovation makes it possible to transform the interactions between people from different geographies, employees or customers, by reducing their environmental impact, and inventing a new customer journey as well as new working methods. I

EDF Renewables announces expansion in Edinburgh

EDF Renewables in the UK has opened an extension to its existing office in Edinburgh to accommodate 60 new jobs created on the Neart Na Gaoithe offshore wind farm project. The expansion comes as part of the company’s continued commitment and investment in Scotland. I

Matthieu Hue, CEO of EDF Renewables, and Derek Mackay, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy and Fair Work

Sopra Steria, a European leader in digital transformation, today announced its success at the UK Cloud Awards, scooping Best Digital Transformation Project for Public Sector/Third Sector Project of the Year. The award was in recognition for Sopra Steria’s partnership with the UK’s financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to help it respond to new European MiFID II guidelines.

International SOS wins post conflict award

International SOS has been recognised by the International Stability Operations Association (ISOA) for contributions in promoting high standards of conduct across the commercial stability operations support sector; specifically for its work providing base support, capacity building, medical training, medical supply provision, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives, and other peacekeeping efforts in post-conflict environments. info

- summer 2019 - 19

Seven B2B companies complete PwC's Raise programme

PwC has completed its third Raise programme for scale-up businesses in collaboration with The Accelerator Network and White Horse Capital. The programme worked with seven revenue generating B2B businesses looking to secure and negotiate their first round of institutional funding and a series of expert-led masterclasses.

Crowe named best place to work

Colas Rail and Network Rail achieve a 97 percent diesel-free site

A project led by the Network Rail and Colas Rail UK has used solar lighting and power generation to prove the viability of a sustainable ‘Site of the Future’, achieving 97% diesel-free operation in support of a major rail renewal project at Llanwern, South Wales. I

Crowe, a public accounting, consulting and technology firm with offices around the world, was named one of Fortune’s 25 Best Workplaces in Consulting & Professional Services for the third consecutive year. The list is based on feedback from more than 339,000 survey respondents at Great Place to Workcertified companies.

Credit Suisse issues Green Certificates of Deposit

Credit Suisse today announces the successful inaugural issuance under its green finance framework, raising $200 million in proceeds in the form of green Yankee Certificates of Deposit (YCD). Given the growing interest from responsible and sustainability-driven investors in short-term money markets, Credit Suisse has issued green YCD in order to (re-) finance a portfolio of eligible green assets, while providing its investors with a debt instrument in the green finance space.

FTPA ranked amongst best private equity firms

FTPA has been named in the 2019 Decideurs ranking of the best law firms in France in Private Equity under the following categories: Development capital transactions, mid & small-cap LBO transactions, LBO tax, and Venture capital transactions.

20 - info - summer 2019

London Stock Exchange Group acquires Beyond Ratings

Beyond Ratings is a highly regarded provider of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) data for fixed income investors. The acquisition enhances the existing ESG index, data solutions and analytics offering within LSEG’s Information Services business. I

Irwin Mitchell launches Inclusive Leadership Programme

In a bid to ensure their future leaders are more diverse, national law firm Irwin Mitchell has launched an inclusive development programme for employees in partnership with business psychology experts Delta Alpha Psi and the Wolverhampton Business School, taking into account that more than one diverse characteristic will impact a candidate’s ability to progress into leadership roles. I

LVMH recognized for fight against counterfeiting On the occasion of

the 22nd World AntiCounterfeiting Day, the LVMH Group’s Market Protection department received an award for the best team (Business category) for its achievements in the fight against counterfeiting. I


JCDecaux participates in Viva Technology JCDecaux, the number one outdoor advertising company worldwide, is participating for the fourth year in Viva Technology, the global innovation and start-up event at the Parc des Expositions exhibition centre at Porte de Versailles in Paris. JCDecaux’s participation will focus on new urban experiences and outdoor advertising driving the development of start-ups. I

Thales awarded Geneva Airport ‘smart’ contract

Financial Times strengthens sustainable business coverage

Thales will provide Geneva Airport with a supervision

The Financial Times announces the launch of FT Moral

platform for its Airport Operation Center by 2020. With

Money, a new initiative that will explore the fast-growing

17.7 million passengers in 2018, and connections to 148

and international shift towards ethical, sustainable and

destinations operated by 57 airlines, Geneva Airport is taking

responsible investing. The ESG sector, where finance and

steps to modernise its operations by centralising supervision

business comply with environmental, social and governance

and improving situational awareness. I

goals, is growing at a record speed, worth $31tr according to the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance, 2018. I

Mazars acquires Hall Liddy

IQ-EQ staff named Top 35 Under 35

Mazars, the international tax, accountancy and advisory firm,

IQ-EQ is delighted to announce that Rhuaridh Watt and Ryan

has acquired Hall Liddy, the leading medical accounting firm

Crawford have been named in eprivateclient’s Channel Islands

in the North West. Hall Liddy will join Mazars’ established

‘Top 35 Under 35’ for 2019. This is the second year that both

specialist healthcare sector team to form one of the largest

young professionals have made the list, giving each a hundred

providers of tax services, accounting, and advice to GPs and

percent success rate since the ranking began. I

medical consultants in the UK. I

L'Occitane moves to sustainable plastic bottles The L’Occitane Group, a global manufacturer and retailer of natural cosmetics and well-being products with five leading brands, and Loop Industries, a leading technology innovator in sustainable plastic, announced today the signing of a multi-year supply agreement for Loop-branded 100 percent sustainable PET plastic. The agreement will enable L’Occitane to increase from its current use of 30 percent recycled plastic in its bottles to reach 100 percent by 2025. I

Saint-Gobain announces the winners of student architecture contest Saint-Gobain presented the awards for the international final of its 15th Multi Comfort Students Contest, following the competition held in Milan (Italy), chaired by Pierre-André Chalendar, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Saint-Gobain. More than 2,200 students from 199 universities entered the contest which mainly addresses those reading architecture and engineering. I


- summer 2019 - 21


Teach on


Europe's premier mobile learning technology provider wants to put a ‘personal learning assistant’ in every smartphone user's pocket. INFO speaks with their UK General Manager Pierre Peigné

What does your company do? Teach on Mars is a software publisher in the learning-tech space, equipping organisations with a next-generation learning ecosystem. We are best known for having pioneered mobile learning tech in Europe. Since 2013, we have served more than 130 blue chip clients spanning all industry verticals, including L’Oreal, LVMH, Vinci, Allianz, BNP, Total,

At Teach on Mars, our value proposition is rooted in one simple belief: nextgeneration learning is not just about technology or content, it’s about learners and their lifestyles

objective of this round is to accelerate our international expansion to solidify our position as pan-European champion in next-gen learning tech, on the back of our current presence in France, UK, Italy, Belgium, Nordics, Netherlands, Morocco. Second, we are doubling down on our R&D investments to strengthen our technology and product leadership. Notably, we’re ramping

and Orange. Our solutions range from

systems, often first-generation tools.

up Artificial Intelligence capabilities to

sales force effectiveness, agile product

However, that segment is in the midst of

bolster our smart algorithms for the

training and point-of-need performance

a replacement cycle, creating significant

automatic construction of personalised

support, to new hire onboarding, digital

opportunities for next generation

and contextualised training paths at the

culture development or communication

providers. Our ongoing ambition is to

core of our personal learning assistant

around strategic initiatives.

create an entirely new market segment


Today, Teach on Mars is helping

around our ‘personal learning assistant’

roughly a million learners up-skill, re-

concept as a single entry-point to each

Tell us about your activities in

skill and cross-skill, in over sixty-four

user’s personalised learning universe.

respect of the UN Sustainable

countries and twenty-three languages.

We also expect adoption rates from

Development Goals?

We’re a team of sixty Martians across

SMEs to pick up in pace dramatically –

Pursuing a genuine social mission while

four offices – Paris, Sophia Antipolis,

so far a largely untapped market.

scaling our business is something we

London and Milan – and growing!

greatly care about. We set up a separate What are the advantages of mobile

organisation called ‘Teach on Earth’ with

What were the challenges of entering

learning versus traditional teaching?

a dedicated staff to equip Non-Profits

the learning tech market?

The most common misconception

with our technology, and collaborate

Among the many challenges in our

around mobile learning is to view it

to build a catalogue of educational

space is undoubtedly the intensity of

as intrinsically opposed to traditional

content to raise awareness on social

competition and the sheer number

teaching methods. The smartphone,

and environmental issues in line with

of providers, each trying to carve out

while being a powerful and versatile

the 17 Sustainable Development Goals

a niche. At Teach on Mars, our value

device, can sit at the centre of a

set out by the UN. Since 2019, Teach on

proposition is rooted in one simple

cross-channel ecosystem. It weaves

Mars has also become a participant in

belief: next-generation learning is not

together all other learning modalities,

the UN Global Compact. Our company

just about technology or content, it’s

whether digital, classroom, on-the-job

mantra reflects that conviction: ‘More

about learners and their lifestyles. This

support, or learning from peers. While

Learning Moments. Better Future.’ The

includes what they expect from their

some solutions in the market can be

best way to promote change is through

learning and their aspirations for their

superficial or gimmicky, if done well,

education. I

future. Technology then just becomes

mobile-led learning ought to fulfil a far

an enabler – as learners’ usage habits

superior promise.

evolve, so will we. What are the priorities for your Where in the market do you see the


most growth potential?

We recently closed a €7m fundraising

Most large corporations are already

round to help us fuel our next phase of

equipped with learning management

growth in 2019 and beyond. The first

22 - info - summer 2019

• Number of users: 1M • Deployed in 64 countries • Languages: 23 • Latest funding round: €7M


JIN evolves into strong tech and strategic consulting agency


fter 6 years of continuous growth, the communications agency JIN (PR agency of the year in France, Holmes Report 2018), who specialise in digital influence and public relations, now has over 70 employees across Paris, London, Hamburg and New York, with the trust of over 100 clients. JIN is strengthening its consulting offer, asserting a new vision for the agency’s future. I

Drivy aquired by Getaround

Yooz uses AI to tackle invoice fraud



he car-sharing start-up Drivy, which specialises in the rental of private vehicles, has been bought for USD 300m by

ooz, an international provider of intelligent P2P software in the Cloud, today announced the launch of YoozProtect,

its American competitor Getaround. ‘Drivy is a solid company

a new functionality to assist in the automatic detection of

whose teams, values and products join those of Getaround.

fraudulent and forged documents and enhance regulation

This suggests a natural integration for our employees and our

compliance for UK businesses. Several large-scale cases have

users,’ said Sam Zaid, Founder and CEO of Getaround. I

recently highlighted the fraud issue, costing businesses such as Google, Facebook, Dell and Microsoft millions of pounds in fake invoices. I

Verdier & Co. Corporate Advisory advises Neovacs on its €10m financing


erdier & Co. advised one of its long-standing clients, Neovacs S.A., the Euronext-listed French biotech in Phase IIb for Lupus. €10m were raised in this latest funding round in the form of a structured zero-coupon convertible bond programme of ORNANEs. Verdier & Co. provided support with the financial modelling and its stress-testing, crafting of the equity story, identifying and reaching out to prospective investors, structuring advice and negotiations. I

Smart Cookie Media launches documentary The Millennial Disruption


he Millennial Disruption is the product of extensive research on the impact of technology on consumer

behaviour and the changing business landscape by Somi Arian, Filmmaker, Entrepreneur, Founder of Smart Cookie Media and Co-Founder of Career Drive. The film was featured on BBC5 Live and has been nominated for six awards in international film festivals and so far won two. The film is available at I


- summer 2019 - 23


The start-up mindset Louis Carle and Etienne Portais founded Maddyness, a digital publication in France with the aim to feature news and insight for start-ups and entrepreneurs

What inspired the creation of a magazine dedicated to the

us in order to support entrepreneurs outside France and

start-up ecosystem?

immerse ourselves in a broader ecosystem in Europe.

Maddyness was born from the desire to help entrepreneurs succeed in their journey. We know how difficult it is to be an

Which trends within the industry are you most excited

entrepreneur and we decided to try our best to help them


to change the world. To do so, we use our media to promote

We are passionate about a lot of sectors, but at the moment

their company, providing them with the advice of the best

we closely follow AI, renewable energies, and MedTech. These

French experts and creating links through our community to

are significant fields of innovation where we are positive that

help them grow their businesses. When we launched, there

the start-ups and their founder’s energy will have a great role

wasn’t any media dedicated to start-ups in France. Today, we

to play. The ‘Tech For Good’ movement is also a way to bring

are proud to gather more than 650,000 readers each month,

more ethics to our ecosystem – an approach with which we

and Maddyness has established itself as the leader in its field.

are aligned.

How would you describe the start-up market in France?

Does Brexit have an impact on French start-ups?

We’re seeing an undeniable boom since we launched and we

We have felt a cooling in the past few months, partly due

are proud to be part of this dynamic ecosystem. In 2018, more

to the questions Brexit raises, and to the fact that no one

than 10,000 start-ups were settled in France, representing

seems to be able to answer them yet. We are in uncertain

around 3.2bn Euros of investments. Those numbers don’t

times where trust is hard to find, even if it’s a vital element

reach the 7bn Euros invested in the UK, but figures are

to make plans in the long term. Luckily, some businesses are

progressing, beating the previous year’s record (2.3bn Euros in

successfully launching across the Channel. We will pay close

2017). The market is structuring and strengthening. It attracts

attention to every move British start-ups will make, as we are

increasingly more foreign investors, taking Emmanuel Macron

well aware that they will reflect the impact of Brexit on the

at his word about his ambition to transform France into a

European ecosystem. I

'Start-up Nation.' What are the plans for Maddyness in 2019?

• Launch: 2012

This year is important for Maddyness. We are launching two

• Readers per month: 650,000

new projects in audio visual and events with Maddyness Event and Maddyness Studio. We will also establish our media outside France. Our internationalisation is a crucial step for 24 - info - summer 2019

• Community: 66% between ages 30 and 45


Qwil Messenger selected for Fin-tech accelerator


wil Messenger, the secure and compliant client chat platform, was selected by the Investment Association to join the second cohort of FinTech firms joining

Velocity, a six-month accelerator programme for and backed by the buy-side and asset management industry. Following a rigorous selection process, with more than fifty applicants, the advisory panel selected five leading FinTech firms due to their innovative solutions, which aim to increase business efficiency and enhance customer experience across an asset manager’s operations. The Investment Association's 250 members manage £7.7tr of assets and the asset management industry supports 100,000 jobs across the UK. I

Club@ Sopra Steria The European leader in digital transformation partnered with the French Chamber to deliver the first Club@ of 2019 for ambitious start-up businesses


t an event hosted in Sopra Steria’s

and Sopra Steria, provided demonstra-

the perfect summer cocktails with a

Holborn DigiLab, start-up founders

tions of their head-set technology.

selection of tonics matched with their

and entrepreneurs had the opportunity






to meet with the company’s innovations

presentation by Sopra Steria AI Ethics

team and to hear about Sopra Steria’s

Lead Ben Gilburt, who set out the

'on-boarding' process. James Aitman

company’s commitment to promoting

and Sanjeev Talwar, directors of the AI

the critical importance of ethics in AI –

and machine learning start-up JifJaff,

quoting from unlikely sources, such as

presented their story of partnering with

the American rapper Childish Gambino

the tech giant.

who sang that men make ‘machines

Their key piece of advice? Perseverance. Reflecting back on their expe-

who want what they decide,’ to highlight gender disparities in the AI field.

rience, Aitman and Talwar counselled

As leaders in ‘Tech for Good,’

assembled guests that signing deals

Sopra Steria has also been active in

with major players can be complex and

the growing movement of supplying

protracted. But the pay-offs are evident

cutting-edge tech solutions of the

for young start-ups looking for growth

public good, specifically in providing

opportunities and access to new client

digital expertise and specialist advice


to the Ben Kinsella Trust, the anti-knife

Holocare, a Norwegian VR solution

signature Theodore Pictish Gin. I

crime charity.

with telemedicine applications, estab-

The Chamber would like to thank

lished in March 2017 by The Interven-

Sopra Steria for their hospitality and

tion Centre at Oslo University Hospital






- summer 2019 - 25

Brown Shipley wins WealthBriefing award


ealth managers Brown Shipley were awarded Best UK Private Bank – Credit Provider at the WealthBriefing European Awards 2019. This showcased the best providers in global private banking wealth management. The awards are designed to recognise companies, teams and individuals deemed to have ‘demonstrated innovation and excellence during 2018.’ I

French Morning London awards Best Baguette London 2019 to Maison Puget

Ponant takes delivery of new ship Le Bougainville



he Best Baguette Competition held its first edition in London. More than 300 bread lovers attended the French

brunch organised by French Morning London at the Huckster

onant successfully took delivery of Le Bougainville, the third vessel in its exceptional Ponant Explorers series, on

schedule. It is fitted with a multi-sensory underwater salon

in Paddington. Maison Puget won two awards, including the

allowing guests to discover and experience the underwater

Jury prize, and Paul Rhodes Bakery who won a prize from the

world. The ship left Sovik in Norway in April and is currently

public. The official jury included David Johnson, Start-up Lab

sailing to Spain to start her maiden cruise in Malaga. She was

Manager of the French Chamber. .I

officially inaugurated in June. I

High-growth entrepreneurs club Home Grown launches in London


ome Grown, the new club for high growth entrepreneurs, has launched. The club, backed by the Home House Collection, is dedicated to helping businesses grow, combining all the benefits of a members’ club with a carefully curated bespoke events programme and networking opportunities. Home Grown runs a number of events throughout the year. I

mycoocoon awarded for light solutions innovation


he wellbeing agency mycoocoon has received the Leading Innovators of Therapeutic Architectural Light Solutions - Europe award by Build Sustainable Building Awards. They worked with leading chromotherapists, aromatherapists and nutritionists, to create a holistic healing solution for the 21st Century. I

Greenwood Distillers launches new spirits portfolio


reenwood Distillers has announced the launch of a spirits portfolio from its home in Ardross in the Northern Highlands. Taking residence in a £18m new

distillery, Greenwood Distillers will launch seven products in the UK market in 2019, with the aim of expanding to export markets including France, Japan and the United States by 2020. Theodore Gin, the company’s first brand, launched in February 2019. I

26 - info - summer 2019


Organic design Orchid Creation is a creative agency based in eight cities across the world, with fifty employees representing thriteen nationalities. INFO speaks with its UK Director, Tafika Ramiaramanana

Tell us a bit about how Orchid Creation works? Orchid works in its very own particular way. We are a group of roughly fifty individuals spread across more than eight locations. We have six offices and some of our colleagues work full-time from home. This means we are able to work around the clock, making us extremely flexible when working with tight deadlines. Around 70 percent of the team is creative and production staff. We’ve got creative directors leading incredible work delivered by our full suite design team, from 2D illustration to 3D design and motion graphics. The other 30 percent are business staff, mainly client management and recently a growing brand and communications strategy department. We all work in a very organic way. We are what is known as a flat organisation, with very little hierarchy and zero bureaucracy. Leaving all this behind allows us to be agile and

We are what is known as a flat organisation, with very little hierarchy and zero bureaucracy. Leaving all this behind allows us to be agile and to spend our time on what really matters

to spend our time on what really matters. How are companies changing in how they want to How do you manage a small yet global team?

communicate their brands?

Our aim has always been to create a truly global company

More and more brands understand the importance of

without losing the local perspective. Because of that, we rely

investing in branding and communications, and every time

on locals rather than expats when building our teams

they come to us, they know a bit more about what they are

around the world. Most of our clients prefer to work with a

after. Most want creative ideas that can make them stand out

global company that understands them at a local level, from

amongst the competition and attract their target audience. It

language to the social nuances that only someone born and

is our role to find those ideas and to make sure that they are

raised there would know.

also compliant with the brand’s existing visual language, tone

We cannot deny that the long distances and time differences between us can be a bit challenging at times.

of voice and positioning. We’ve also noticed that lately, social media, and Instagram

However, it also brings something extremely valuable which

in particular, have become a very powerful channel for brands

is great diversity, both in our core and applied to everything

to connect with their audience. We have seen an increase in

we do.

requests for social media campaigns, such as what we did for

In terms of how we keep track at a functional level, we

Benefit Cosmetics or Google Indie Games.

avoid big meetings whenever possible, and instead try to be always in touch via Slack. Together with Google Hangouts,

What did you learn from working with a tech giant like

these are our only internal communication tools. Emails are


only used with clients and suppliers.

Google taught us about the importance of being flexible and learning quickly in order to keep up with their requests. We

What led to your decision to expand to the UK? What are

started by beautifying their decks and quickly moved on to

your priorities in the market?

becoming their creative and strategic partner.

The UK is the door to the world and the HQ of business,

The other important thing we learned from working with

finance and tech in the region, so it was an obvious choice to

them is to believe in ourselves. It gave us a lot of confidence

open an office there. Our priorities are to first be known by

to see that such a giant company relied on us when seeking

our global clients like Google and Snapchat as a key partner in

creative advice. They trusted us and empowered us to push

EMEA, and to be inspired by the eclecticism and creativity of

boundaries and surprise them on each project we do

the city.

with them. I


- summer 2019 - 27


Democracy in action for EIFA International School London On 19 June, students from EIFA visited the French National Assembly as the guests of the French Minister of Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, and the Assembly President, Richard Ferrand. The students had taken part in a competition to put forward a law relating to internet safety and their proposal was selected as one of the four finalists, out of 896 entries. During their visit to the National Assembly, the children attended debates featuring senior members of the government including the French Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe. I

HEC Paris and partners explore the future of space economy

Toulouse Business School (TBS) has AACSB accreditation renewed

ArianeGroup, an Airbus–Safran joint venture, joined a

TBS has achieved the renewal of AACSB (Association to

collaborative platform set up by the European Space Agency

Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) accreditation for

(ESA) and leading business school, HEC Paris, with the aim to

the next 5 years, for the 4th time in a row. The American

explore scenarios for the future of the space economy over

institution assesses business schools according to the

the next three decades and to anticipate new solutions for

highest international quality standards. I

space transport vehicles. I

NEOMA Business School opens its campuses to art NEOMA Business School will host two art exhibitions organised in association with the school's students. In Reims, several contemporary and singular works combining a diversity of materials by the sculptor Mauro Corda will be exhibited. The Rouen campus will be decorated by a range of charicatures in India ink by the street artist Charles Leval, who is better known as Levalet. I

Grenoble Ecole de Management students benefit from experiential learning Grenoble Ecole de Management MSc in Fashion Design & Luxury Management students travelled to Milan this year on a residency study. The students chose to analyse the Italian luxury food industry with a focus on sustainability. As part of their research they investigated the Milan initiative Too Good to Go, as well as other projects launched by Michelin-starred chef Massimo Bottura. I

EDHEC organises the first business school hackathon True to its innovative mindset, EDHEC Business School organised the first business school hackathon at VivaTech, the major innovation and start-up event held at Paris-Porte de Versailles in May. More than 60 participants competed in a challenge focused on helping youngsters make their first career choices. I

28 - info - summer 2019


A selection of research papers and reports produced by Chamber member companies and partners

Deloitte: Global Powers of Luxury Goods 2019 Global Powers of Luxury Goods 2019 provides a detailed outlook of the Luxury sector, examining the 100 largest luxury goods companies worldwide. The report notes that despite the economic slowdown in various parts of the world, the luxury sector remains positive and keeps its strong performance. Amongst the key trends emerging, the clothing and footwear companies were dominant in the market, representing the highest number of companies. The report also shows that the cosmetics and fragrances market has witnessed the biggest luxury sales growth. Global Powers of Luxury Goods - 2019 Available at:

House of Commons: Fixing Fashion: clothing consumption and sustainability The report issued by the Environmental Audit Committee of the House of Commons denunciates the bad practices of the fashion industry (fast fashion, labour, environmental impact…) The economic model is still too focused on cost reduction and profit maximisation at the expense of social and environmental preoccupations. The Committee recognises that ‘Fashion shouldn’t cost the earth.’ A new economic model is needed to drive a more sustainable future for this sector. Exciting and innovative sustainable initiatives already exist, and recommendations by the House of Commons to the Government are advancing towards this goal. Fixing Fashion - February 2019 Available at:

Boston Consulting Group (with Sustainable Apparel Coalition and Global Fashion Agenda): Pulse of the Fashion Industry The key finding of the 2019 Pulse Score is that the Fashion industry has again improved its social and environmental performance in the past year, but at a slower rate than the previous years. Despite the improvements made, the report highlights that the fashion industry is far from sustainable. There is hope, as the environmental, ethical and social challenges are not only threats but also value creation opportunities. However, industry actors have to move faster and implement changes quicker if they want to achieve United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and meet Paris Agreement targets. Pulse of the Fashion Industry - May 2019 Available at:


- summer 2019 - 29

30 - info - summer 2019


n 13 June 2019, the French Chamber of Great Britain held the London Luxury Think Tank at Spring Studios, organised

in partnership with Walpole and the United Nations Office for Partnerships. It marked the second edition of the event, which was established in 2017 as a platform for high-level engagement on topical issues between leaders, pioneers and disruptors from across the luxury sector. This year, the theme of sustainability was at the core of the event, with the question ‘What makes luxury sustainable’ driving an agenda of talks, discussions and debates about the challenges and successes of an industry in transition. We were especially honoured to welcome the United Nations Office for Partnerships as official partner to help promote the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and consider their application across the industry. As you will read in this twenty-page FOCUS section, which includes reports from the event and new insight from Chamber partners and members, luxury brands are increasingly adopting sustainable business practices, while others are embarking on creative projects to connect with ethically-minded consumers. To focus on specific trends, articles and interviews will also explore the sub-themes of reuse and recycling, sustainable production, and marketing and communication strategies, among many others. Together with thought leadership from industry leaders, and new ideas from innovative start-ups, we hope that this issue will be a useful addendum to the event, and above all stimulating for you and your business. I


- summer 2019 - 31

Photography by Joana Saramago


13 June 2019

Spring Studios

Panels, speakers and pictures on: Co-organiser

Main sponsor

Supporting sponsor

Host partner

Media partners


- summer 2019 - 33

The new SUSTAINABLE CONSUMERS Recent research by PwC, official sponsor of the London Luxury Think Tank, reveals the scale of the problem facing the luxury sector in its sustainable transition. Customer and Retail Analytics Director Megan Higgins and UK Retail Lead Sue Rissbrook provide context and insight


he electrification of luxury vehicles, the sustainable

items of clothing made each year will be disposed. Strikingly,

sourcing of precious materials and the move to

the amount of clothing bought has doubled in the last fifteen

renewable energy sources are just some of the challenges

years, while the number of times an item is worn has declined

underway in a luxury industry grappling with its transition to more sustainable supply chains and business models. The scale of the problem is coming into ever greater focus,

by 20 percent.


with recent PwC research showing that the fashion industry

At the same time, the industry has signalled its intent to

alone contributes ten percent of global greenhouse gas

change, with a focus on sustainable and cruelty-free materials,

emissions, more than those emitted by all international flights

low emissions, ethics and transparency among other areas of

and maritime shipping combined.

activity, showing that sustainability has grown beyond a level of

It takes 2,700 litres of water to produce the cotton needed to make a single t-shirt, equivalent to 10,800 glasses of water, and up to 95 percent of the textiles that are landfilled each year could be recycled, but are not.

mere awareness, becoming a genuine strategic factor for the development of brands. PwC research demonstrates a rise in an influential cohort of consumers focused on sustainability, with nearly half of

On the consumer side, 38 percent of millennial shoppers

consumers saying they would change their habits to reduce

have bought half of the clothes they own within the past year

their impact on the environment. Forty-eight percent of

– with estimates showing that 40 percent of the 100 billion

millennials say they have chosen, or stopped using, a product

34 - info - summer 2019


PwC research demonstrates a rise in an influential cohort of consumers focused on sustainability, with nearly half of consumers saying they would change their habits to reduce their impact on the environment because of the environmental reputation of its manufacturer.

percent), London (54 percent) and Tokyo (49 percent).

This has not gone unnoticed in the industry, where there

There are also ethical expectations of companies, and

has been an 83 percent increase in editorial mentions of the

within companies from their staff. Ninety percent of Generation

term ‘sustainable fashion brands’ from 2017 to 2018.

Z consumers feel that companies have a responsibility to

Amongst the consumer cohort, higher income earners

address environmental and social issues.

and 18-24-year-olds are the most supportive of sustainable

Employees and consumers alike want to engage with

fashion. Nearly 70 percent of these consumers are willing to

businesses that align themselves with social values, such as

pay a premium for a sustainable product.

sustainability and local production. Millennials, in particular

A regional analysis shows that this trend is highest in

are consciously making purchases around sustainable and

Shanghai, where 90 percent of the demographic espoused

environmentally packaged brands and products. I

these values, followed by Hong Kong (71 percent), New York (55

source: LLTT presentation by Megan Higgins

SUSTAINABLE RETAIL PwC insights show that the consumer is becoming more ethical and informed on the high street and online. ‘We might call it the Blue Planet effect,’ says Sue Rissbrook, Retail Lead, PwC. ‘People are changing their shopping habits. There is also a strong focus on plastic.’ Another effect has been a decrease in shopping habits more broadly, where some shoppers want more personalisation and are buying statement pieces, rather than in bulk. According to Rissbrook, the luxury industry in this context has an important role to play, trialling

and offering innovative solutions such as re-sale of stock, and the use of sustainable fabrics. ‘There is an important education piece to these changes, as the consumer needs to fundamentally understand the difference between cotton and other fabrics, including what is now being called sustainable cotton.’ Rissbrook points to the Stella McCartney brand as a best-in-class example of sustainable innovation and leadership in the sector. There is also an important focus on how companies and brands report their sustainability initiatives and results. PwC

analysis of reporting in FTSE 250 companies found that there was significant room for improvement in impact reporting, with only 22 percent of companies clearly showing the link between their impact and their purpose in their reporting. With attention being paid to initiatives across a range of impacts, including supply chain, energy consumption and water consumption, the ability for companies to tell the story behind their targets, facts and figures, will be crucial for business in the years ahead. I


- summer 2019 - 35

Redefining LUXURY RETAIL Matter of Form, the international design and technology firm, provides a snapshot of a luxury industry in transition and explores the rise in conscious consumerism


ustainability once hovered like a buzzword on the

goods market in 2025.

fringes of fashion’s collective consciousness. A passing

Global fashion search engine, Lyst, reported a forty-seven

micro-trend, perhaps, briefly illuminated in the fashion

percent increase in searches for ‘vegan leather’ and ‘organic

press, only to be cast aside for next season’s collection when

cotton’ in their latest report, which analyses data from 80 million

no longer in vogue.

shoppers, 100 million searches, five million products and 120

Fashion as a whole has, historically, not been lauded for its

countries. The company predicts that in 2020, ten percent of

ethical practices. But that is a simplistic view of the industry.

all fashion purchases on Lyst will be made with sustainability

Fashion history provides a fascinating reflection of the state of

in mind.

the world and its cultural issues in every era. And as social and

The top-selling sustainable product? Stella McCartney’s

environmental causes fast become the defining issues of our

collaboration with Adidas, the first ever vegetarian Stan Smith

time, the runway reacts accordingly.

trainer. Stella McCartney has led the way in sustainability for

Maria Grazia Chiuri, the first female creative director at Dior, house





the to

some time, founding her eponymous brand on cruelty-free methods and

feminist with unapologetically








pioneering new







knowing references. At Chanel,

limit environmental impact.

brides wear the trousers (down

In December at COP24 in

the catwalk): a not-so-subtle

Poland, she announced the

metaphor for the societal shift

UN Fashion Industry Charter

inspired by the rise of feminism

for Climate Action, in a bid to

and movements like #metoo.

address the urgent measures

And now, we are seeing a


definitive shift in attitudes to


sustainability: this is no passing trend. It’s a cultural movement.




It is a given that a luxury brand should fulfil expectations of


quality, exclusivity, craftsmanship, and customer experience.

No longer can retailers solely rely on the weight of heritage or

But now they need to take an active stance on social and

even traditional craftsmanship for brand equity. A brand’s stance

environmental issues in order to meet the demands of

on issues can affect desirability, too. This is a fundamentally

increasingly purpose-driven consumers.

new relationship between company and consumer – purchase

The fashion industry is one of the most environmentally damaging industries globally. This does not sit well with today’s conscious consumer.

SUPPLY AND DEMAND Has this demand for sustainability affected the demand for

is premised on a brand’s willingness to live by its values, operate with purpose, and if necessary, make the leap into activism. In 2018, Burberry, Versace, Chanel and Maison Margiela all banned fur from their collections. In September, The British Fashion Council announced that London Fashion Week would be completely fur-free for the first time.

luxury? Bain & Company research indicates five percent real-

Fashion conglomerates LVMH and Kering have adopted

term growth in 2018. While retail luxury outlets are downsizing,

newly formed sustainability strategies while L’Oreal has its

the accessible luxury market is growing, particularly in China,

ambitious ‘zero deforestation’ policy in its supply chain.

which is expected to account for forty-six percent of the luxury

It’s not just limited to fashion: the luxury hospitality market

Nine in ten Generation Z consumers believe companies have a responsibility to address environmental and social issues 36 - info - summer 2019

© Stella McCartney - World of Sustainability


In a digital world, consumers can easily track the supply chain of goods and independently determine the validity of eco-conscious claims is thinking green, too. Hotels such as Six Senses and 1 Hotels

Though the heralding of sustainability or environmentalism

now consider everything from an environmentally conscious

is somewhat less political, brands are now subject to very

point of view, from the building materials of the hotel itself right

public, intrusive analysis. In the digital, fast-globalising world

down to the ingredients in the toiletries and menus.

we inhabit, consumers can very easily track the supply chain of

Part of this new era of authenticity has been a reformation of business culture that starts from within. 1 Hotels, for example,

particular goods and independently determine – and expose – the validity of an ‘eco-conscious brand.’

offers staff paid time off to volunteer in environmental advocacy

‘In the past, what we’ve seen is a lot of sustainable

and public education activities. Meaningful internal brand

campaigns that were quite surface level,’ says Future

culture has become an essential validation tool with regard to

Laboratory’s Foresight Editor Ruth Marshall-Johnson. ‘There

external brand messaging. Raconteur highlighted how sixty-six

was a lot of lip service being paid to this idea. Sometimes it

percent of customers said great culture attracts them to buy

didn’t go far enough and it certainly hadn’t been built into

from certain brands over others, beyond price and quality.

the lifecycle of a product. What we’re starting to see is more

Businesses are therefore looking internally to seek mutually reinforced visions of purpose and culture – something we at

companies looking at ensuring the whole process of making a product and getting it to the consumer is sustainable.’

Matter Of Form are particularly passionate about. Employees

The digital world we now inhabit has made us into a more

are unified and inspired by a common sense of purpose and

cause-oriented community than ever before. Brands are now

identity. Less a standardised 9-5 working life, brands offer a

forced to be accountable and transparent, which presents

lifestyle to both employees and customers – a reflection of the

the opportunity to have more meaningful and constructive

convergence of the way we live and work.

relationships with their customers. In turn, consumers demand


a collective sense of purpose, beyond mere profit margins. As climate change reaches crisis point and government

It is worth remembering that socially-conscious branding is

action is negligible, consumers are taking matters into their

a fine line to tread: one that risks exploiting social issues for

own hands. In such a crowded marketplace, it’s the brands

corporate benefit and blatant hypocrisy. In today’s highly

that lead with integrity, consistently innovate, and best

contentious political climate, brands must be authentic. Pepsi

communicate their ethical and environmentally-conscious

learned the hard way following their disastrous attempt to

values to audiences that will shape conversation and cement

piggyback the Black Lives Matter movement in 2017.

customer loyalty. I


- summer 2019 - 37

A positive MESSAGE for positive FASHION The British Fashion Council’s ‘Positive Fashion’ initiative encourages a sustainable stance in the sector


he UK government announced an update on the Climate Change Act the day before the London Luxury Think Tank (LLTT), with the aim to cut greenhouse gases to

zero by 2050. The LLTT’s final key note speech by Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council (BFC), reflects on the enormity of

this climate change emergency and the need for all levels to prove their involvement in the world of fashion.

THE IMPACT OF FASHION Rush highlights that the fashion and textile industry has the unenviable title of being the second largest polluting industry. To improve, Rush says that ‘sustainability cannot be on the periphery. It has to be embedded in business thinking, from product development right the way to the consumer.’ Rush says that there is a strong impetus to act amongst British brands. In the past three years, the failure rates of businesses have declined and the Council has seen more of those businesses grow in a sustainable way. However, larger companies are faced with the challenge of not knowing where to start, says Rush. To offset this obstacle, the BFC brings together stakeholders across the sector, through its ‘Positive Fashion’ initiative. From education to the global luxury brands themselves and business advisors, all aim to share knowledge, especially with younger businesses. ‘This is the opportunity to corral the industry to come together to have a collective voice,

Sustainability […] has to be embedded in business thinking, from product development right the way to the consumer

to share that knowledge, to put aside competitive differences and to make sure that we’re all moving in the right direction to

themselves, designers need to have better access to

make a change,’ says Rush.

sustainable materials, to counter the depletion of natural

The Positive Fashion programme encompasses three main

resources in the world. At the other end of the process,

pillars: people, focusing on diversity, inclusion, and access;

wastage needs to be minimised, from packaging and hangers,

craftsmanship and community; and sustainability and ethics.

to overstock and unsaleable returns.

Rush emphasises the latter. ‘We need to hit that net carbon

AI and data analysis can help us to monitor the supply

neutral target, set by the government, to then create long-term

chain and to manufacture smartly. According to Rush, new

value for the businesses,’ she says.

businesses are already aiming to be sustainable from the


start. For bigger businesses, she says it is harder to get the transparency in the supply chain, but all companies have to

Sustainability can be influenced by many factors. Energy usage

start somewhere.

is one. ‘For the last couple of years, we’ve been building a

Rush says that all businesses should aim to define their

campaign with Vivienne Westwood around looking to switch

brand purpose with sustainability and positive fashion in

to green energy,’ says Rush. ‘Think about your energy usage.

mind. ‘This needs to be embedded into the business, it needs

Encourage your suppliers and partners to do the same.’

to be authentic, it needs to be measurable and it needs to

The supply chain features heavily in her narrative. The

be something that you’re willing to stand behind for the long

luxury industry is global and growing. When transporting

term,’ she says. A positive message on which to close the

goods and people, efficiency is crucial. Similarly, for materials

Think Tank. I SL

38 - info - summer 2019


Slow FASHION INFO speaks with model and fashion influencer Doina Ciobanu about the demand for fast fashion and how the industry should act more sustainably How are approaches to education changing? This is amongst the trickiest of questions. Like any global business-to-consumer industry, it works in a circular manner where its sustainability, or lack of it, starts at sourcing and production, and ends with the consumer, who has the responsibility to consume responsibly. Supply and demand rests in our hands. But as long as we expect fast, cheap and disposable products, the fashion industry is going to cater to that demand. The problem is that more than 99 percent of people globally are purchasing mass-produced goods from fast-fashion retailers. It would be exciting to see fast-fashion retailers improve their supply chain and production. They will always have a far bigger impact on the environment than all the small manufacturers or luxury fashion houses combined. What brands do you think are setting the best example in the industry? In the past few years I have seen the bright side of fashion and it’s been such a beautiful and hopeful experience. Companies like Bottle Top are giving us a completely new angle of fashion accessories by using bottle tops in a very Paco Rabanne kind of way. The AYA label are making swimwear out of recycled fishing nets. Isko, a Turkish denim supplier, are pushing for new technologies in denim production by reducing water and harmful substance usage. What is the role for influencers like yourself? I look at today’s new era of online voices as a phenomenal

The future of sustainable fashion should be exclusive, but not based on wealth and archaic social hierarchies, rather it should be based on production quantity. Haute couture should serve as the production and sales model for slower fashion

moment in history, democracy and freedom of speech. However, I think that the voice that you have is empowered by people – whether you’re an actor, singer, politician or fashion

for slower fashion. Having said that, the presence of ‘stock

influencer – and it comes with enormous responsibility.

destruction’ still horrifies me and I can’t believe governments

When widespread global communities are looking at you

haven’t imposed penalties. I truly hope that can change soon.

for inspiration, you simply cannot miss the opportunity to bring awareness to social and political issues. Maybe I’m just a

You have been a vocal advocate to reduce plastic usage.

desperate idealist, but I strongly believe that we can do so much

What role can the fashion industry play in this transition?

good if we use our influence for good.

A massive one. The fashion industry, along with music, entertainment and sports, have a massive audience on social

Haute couture is traditionally associated with exclusivity,

media and in the press. Having this extra exposure really gives

and brands often destroy stock to maintain their scarcity –

a phenomenal platform to speak about important issues and

are these practices at odds with a sustainable future?

spread awareness, either as a company or as a public individual.

Haute couture by its nature is not unsustainable, because it

That’s why I am always eager to encourage my friends and

is bespoke and usually has a very ethical work force behind

acquaintances to discover the world, self-educate and stand

it. On whether scarcity and exclusivity are incompatible with

for something publicly. It doesn’t have to be plastic reduction

sustainability, absolutely not. The future of sustainable fashion

specifically, it can be ocean pollution, renewable energy, or

should be exclusive, but not based on wealth and archaic social

consumerism. If you’re not also using your platform for good,

hierarchies, rather it should be based on production quantity.

you’re just letting it go to waste, and we simply cannot afford

Haute couture should serve as the production and sales model

that with the environmental crisis we are facing. I


- summer 2019 - 39

A role for LUXURY in the SUSTAINABLE future The UN Sustainable Development Goals provide a blueprint for luxury brands to engage on a global scale, says Robert Skinner, Executive Director of the United Nations Office for Partnerships


he seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set

customers, especially younger customers and clients, in addition

by the United Nations in its 2015 call for emergency action

wanting to do the right thing.

on climate change and an end to world poverty and hunger

His work can be complicated by the soft touch required

by 2030, among other ambitious targets aimed at reducing global

to get some brands and companies onboard. ‘We don’t try

inequalities and creating a more sustainable future for all.

to be disruptive or directive,’ says Skinner, recognising that

Having been adopted by 193 member states of the UN, the private sector now has a key role to play in this transition, and

organisations are going to be responsive to what their consumers and clients are looking for.’

the luxury industry in particular has both a need to transform its

Skinner opens the conversation with CEOs and CMOs across

business practices and the ability to reach out to others through

sectors with the same pitch. He presents them with the menu

its traditional soft power and ability to shape trends.

of the seventeen SDGs, which for example include affordable

‘We know that the luxury industry is leading tastemakers and

and clean energy, clean water, and access to work and economic

influencers,’ says Robert Skinner, Executive Director of the UN’s

development, to gauge where in the business (and with whom)

Office for Partnerships and the point-man for the adoption of the

they might achieve buy-in and change.

SDGs in business and industry. ‘If we can get the industry or a

‘We start from that point and. depending on how they

significant portion of the industry to take up the goals and the

respond. our Office for Partnerships is able to link them up with

framework to drive other businesses, then we feel that we are

the right part of the UN and the right part of governments or

reaching a pretty broad population.’

regions,’ says Skinner. He notes that businesses he speaks with

This means raising awareness, first and foremost. And with

often have geographic priorities, whether they are trying to open

the five-year mark next year, Skinner feels that progress has been

in new markets or trying to improve their practices or image in

made, but change and adoption needs to accelerate if the goals

specific regional contexts.

are going to be met.

GREEN SHOOTS Skinner’s office is regularly contacted by companies expressing an interest in the SDGs, driven principally by a demand from their 40 - info - summer 2019

‘We are always happy when we can drive resources, but we are also looking for more companies to bring their expertise, their interest, and their awareness-raising around the goals, in addition to potentially giving resources to support these programmes.’


We are looking for more companies to bring their expertise, interest, and awareness-raising around the goals, in addition to potentially giving resources to support these programmes


thirteen: ‘Climate Action.’)

Skinner says that the ‘true key’ of the goals is to reduce inequalities.

‘That’s the beauty of the goals,’ says Skinner. ‘They are all

At its core, the SDGs are an ethical paradigm which includes, in the

connected.’ He notes that it is about the circular economy and

context of the luxury sector, sustainable production and energy

making sure that we are managing the waste from industries,

consumption, and crucially also employment practices such as

which have an impact on many of the SDGs.

the treatment of employees, gender equality, health of workers, working conditions and labour standards.


In an industry which has traditionally been a poor performer

Skinner’s office is working with partners across the fashion

in terms of sustainability, there has been a dissonance between

industry, including a number of companies actively working in the

ideas of suitability and inherent characteristics of luxury goods

area of sustainable fashion, where collaboration has been key to

such as scarcity, exclusivity, high cost, and impact on communities


in terms of resources and labour standards.

He points to the recently launched Fashion Industry Charter

But this too is changing. Skinner notes improvements

for Climate Change, which has a target of 30 percent reduction

underway in the fashion industry, where SDG number twelve,

in emissions by 2030 and the end goal of achieving net-zero

‘Responsible Consumption,’ reflects a conversation about reuse,

emissions by 2050. A growing number of signatories include

recycling and reuse, and challenges brands to manage their stock

Nike, Adidas and the Kering Group. ‘We are seeing that a lot of

and production in a responsible way. Packaging and the use of

those companies are saying: We have to work with other actors

plastics is also an important area to address in the industry’s

of the industry,’ says Skinner. ‘Companies that are leading on

practices, as too much plastic is destroying life underwater and

sustainability say that they are going to bring the rest of the

on land and contributing to climate change. (That’s SDG number

industry along with them.’ I


- summer 2019 - 41

The age of RESALE James Harford-Tyrer, Founder of Cudoni, a digital platform for selling pre-owned luxury goods, explains the bourgeoning trends in second-hand sales


e live in an age where concern for the Earth’s health has never been

greater; with an ever-larger number of people relying on an ever-decreasing number of resources. It’s against this backdrop, then, that we see a new age

Gone are the days where one could (and should) purchase an item, only to discard it a few months later, without a second thought

of luxury goods emerging – an age of

Cudoni team place the customer at the core of everything we do. The success of the Cudoni service stems from this philosophy of putting the customer first in every step of the journey. We have recognised that our clients don’t want the hassle of resale, so we’ve designed a process to make

resale. Gone are the days where one

selling your unwanted luxury goods

could (and should) purchase an item,

accuracy. After all, a successful start-

easier than ever before, and through

only to discard it a few months later,

up can’t simply live in the present, as

our concierge system we do all the work

without a second thought.

an agent of change, it has to be able

for you, while you sit back and relax.

to measure consumer behaviour five,

No photography, no listing, no guessing

these shifts in the consumer zeitgeist

ten and twenty years into the future.

value, no negotiations, no packaging,

when I was a twelve-year-old boy,

Whilst my team are concerned with the

no shipments, and importantly, nothing

selling others’ unwanted goods from

present, it is my role to ensure that our

at all to worry about. On the other

my parent’s garage. Back then, the

vision for the future is clear.

side of the equation, it means we can

Admittedly, I had little foresight of

opportunity was purely to assist busy

This isn’t to suggest that our path

guarantee to our buyers that they’ll

people in selling their unwanted

has always been obvious, and, as

receive the fastest dispatch and delivery,

possessions for the purposes of

everyone in the industry knows, the

highest quality, and most importantly,

decluttering and financial return. It was

world of luxury goods presents its own

our seal of approval on authenticity.

only really when I left my previous role

interesting and unusual challenges. We

in finance that it became abundantly

treat each item that passes through

sector to operate and scale in as

clear that, beyond recovering space and

our hands, whether it be an Hermès

a business, but we take immense

monetary value from luxury products,

Birkin bag, or a Patek Philippe watch,

pleasure in pioneering a more circular

resale and reuse served an even greater

with the same reverence of its former

economy. By reusing these items, we

purpose in preserving our planet’s

owner, and the same excitement of

keep those old memories alive, and


its future one as well. This is the single

allow new ones to flourish. It brings

greatest challenge presented by the

each one of us together through the

companies announce their interest in

world of luxury goods. These are often

strands of our collective stories. It

this space with almost daily regularity,

lifelong objects of emotion and desire;

is undeniable that reutilisation is a

I’m pleased that we were able to

unique vessels of our memories and

fantastic thing for our planet, and

assess the future landscape with such

our passions, and are exactly why the

our future. I

Looking back now, as new


42 - info - summer 2019

Resale is undeniably a challenging


How to build a SUSTAINABLE BRAND Elvis & Kresse have been rescuing raw materials and transforming them into luxury lifestyle accessories since 2005. Here their co-founder Kresse Wesling provides a blueprint for sustainable businesses

SOLVE AN ACTUAL, CRISIS- LEVEL PROBLEM Most entrepreneurs consider themselves to be problem solvers. They roll-out ideas that make life easier, more entertaining, healthier, or safer. But this is 2019, you can’t avoid the climate crisis, the biodiversity crisis, or global social inequalities. If you are building a sustainable brand, you absolutely must be engaged with the big problems and if you need inspiration, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a good place to start. We didn’t set Elvis & Kresse up to create a luxury goods brand, our sole reason for starting the business was to rescue London’s damaged, decommissioned fire-hoses and keep them from languishing in landfill. For reference, by mounting this rescue and working in an ethical and sustainable manner we are tackling the following SDGs: Decent Work and Economic Growth (number 8), Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (9), and Responsible Consumption and Production (12).

FOCUS ON MULTIPLE POSITIVE OBJECTIVES You also have to remember that you can’t solve a big problem sustainably if your solution causes other problems. It isn’t enough to just rescue and reuse material (like we do with fire hoses), we are a certified Social Enterprise and a founding UK B Corp. We are a living wage employer, we use renewable energy, we make all our own packaging from reclaimed materials, we offer apprenticeships, we donate 50 percent of our profits to charity. I serve on the board of Keep Britain Tidy (an amazing waste-related charity), and we only take business decisions if we

We only take business decisions if we think the outcome will make the world better for other people’s grandchildren, and we never feel like we are done

think the outcome will make the world better for other people’s grandchildren, and we never feel like we are done. This is a

a team, their activities and the goods or services they provide.

journey. We can always do more and be better.

There are a lot of companies whose brand or identity is more


sustainable than their actual work. This kind of disconnect is essentially a lie. Don’t do that.

Be an expert at your problem and be totally committed to

We rescue materials, transform them into beautiful products

it. Remember that the solution might change over time. By

and donate half of our profits to charity. The authenticity of our

remaining wedded to fire-hoses we never fail to have an

brand is that we deliver, every day, on these promises. We don’t

impact. By being experts in our waste materials, we can adapt

need a marketing strategy; the truth is interesting enough.

our business over time while continuing to solve our chosen problems and deliver real change.

BE GENUINE Remember that a brand is meant to stand for something, so

Last year our donations created three scholarships for female solar engineers at Barefoot College. Through the design, manufacture and sale of accessories, we transformed around 3000kg of leather that would otherwise go to landfill into three scholarships.

stand for something and then deliver. A brand isn’t a stunning

When the choice is between creating three tonnes of waste

logo or a catchy strapline. It is the recognisable manifestation of

or creating scholarships, we all know which is the right choice. I


- summer 2019 - 43

The COLOUR connection INFO speaks with ValĂŠrie Corcias, CEO and Co-Founder of the health and design agency mycoocoon, who set up a relaxation area and led meditation sessions at the London Luxury Think Tank

A twenty-minute power nap in our Coocoon Pods is equivalent to two hours of sleep

Describe the concept behind your

emotional, psychological and spiritual

employees and clients. Investing in

wellbeing space at the LLTT.

level. With mycoocoon, we are recreating

mental, physical and emotional health

Our mission is to make a real difference

the effects that you get when you are

will help create a happier, healthier


connected with nature.












in the hastag #H2H. Through our

The colour light immersions are

workplaces and hospitality sectors will

colour consultancy, we aim to reduce

designed for specific needs: jet lag,

provide the mycoocoon solution for their



employees or clients.











We install colour light cabins to allow

enhance team building, and reinforce

people to rest and we also design multi-

Tell us a bit about your experience at

connection between the company and

sensorial workshops and journeys to

the LLTT

its employees. A twenty-minute power

generate links through colour for clients.

The attendees enjoyed their spectrum

nap in our Coocoon Pods is equivalent to two hours of sleep.

meditation at the beginning of the What is your advice to employers in

conference, as well as the proposition

terms of their workspaces?

to have a moment of relaxation during

How does immersive colour help us

We encourage more and more large

the day in the bespoke area we set up.

relax and unwind?

companies to invest in the well-being

Our goal was for them to feel the power

It brings wellness to people with an

and mental health of their employees.

of colour. I

active lifestyle thanks to the energy that

Companies have to allow for budgets

colour transmits. It heals you on an

to set up well-being spaces for their

44 - info - summer 2019


RETHINKING aftercare Prolonging the life of our wardrobes can have an immediate impact on the environmental cost of the fashion industry. Mathilde Blanc, co-founder of the eco-dry cleaners Blanc, speaks with Marie Koziol of INFO magazine


he longer we wear our clothes the

clothes. This is instead of traditional

change in the consumption behaviours,

better. So says Mathilde Blanc, of

dry cleaning, which she says 'is neither

via a rise of the second-hand, vintage

the natural dry-cleaner BLANC,

dry nor clean,' because it uses a toxic

and rental markets, is led by customers,

who cites recent figures showing that in

liquid called PERC (perchloroethylene,

especially among the younger

the UK we throw away 300,000 tonnes

derived from petroleum) that stays in


of clothes every single year – preferring

the garments’ fibres long after they have

fast fashion and frequent purchases

supposedly been cleaned.

rather than making use of the clothes we already own.

At BLANC, sustainability also

BLANC’s message is hitting a chord with this new generation of customers who are keen not to take

includes smaller everyday actions, such

anything for granted anymore and to

as choosing energy efficient washing

‘check the label’. ‘We’re really focused

of clothing by nine months will reduce

machines, or promoting their values

on giving people solutions to live

its carbon and water footprint by

not only to their customers, but also to

more sustainably and there is a lot

twenty-to-thrity percent,’ says Blanc,

their staff throughout the supply chain.

to talk about and a lot to do,’ says

whose business is part of a revolution in

‘We are also working on our processes

Blanc. The brand also organises brand

aftercare and sustainable values.

so most of the packaging we use is

collaborations, talks and workshops that

reusable or recyclable (or both!). We

help promote BLANC’s focus on quality

need to wear our clothes for longer, but

are not there yet, but we are moving

and sustainability.

we also need to care for them in more

as far away from plastic as possible,

eco-friendly ways. Thirty-six percent of

which is tough in our industry because


the environmental impact of clothes

alternatives often do not exist yet as

Blanc firmly believes that people should

happens at the consumer-use stage –

they do in other industries like food or

be helped to make their wardrobes last

meaning the way we wash and dry at

beauty,’ she adds.

longer. But when it comes time to part

‘Prolonging the lifespan of a piece

According to Blanc, not only do we

home, as well as our use of traditional

Blanc notes that customer mindsets

with a garment, there is now a raft of

dry-cleaning services, which mostly

are evolving, and whilst quality and

sustainable options for customers to

use toxic and harmful chemicals when

results will always be people’s primary

choose from. They can resell clothes

cleaning clothing.

consideration, customers are more and

on a number of established and newly-

more interested to hear about BLANC’s

launched second-hand platforms or opt

sustainable and ethical ethos, willing to

for a more traditional route and donate

‘Within the aftercare industry, things are

make the switch and ready to spread

to charities.

starting to change and we’re pushing

the word.

‘Frankly, once you’ve looked at what

ECO- MINDSET hard to go further. The dry-cleaning

‘People care about toxicity in their

incineration does to the environment

industry must evolve,’ says Blanc. Her

environment, and they do want their

and what landfills look like, you’ll try not

brand of cleaning only uses water and

clothes to last longer, especially when

to put any textiles in the bin at all,’ says

biodegradable detergents to clean

they have invested in quality pieces’. The

Blanc. ‘To be honest with you, I can’t remember doing it for years.’ The slow, but global recognition that the fashion industry is generating an environmental problem of epic proportions has created opportunities for businesses with a focus on sustainability. ‘We’re helping customers to take care of their wardrobes and make their clothes last longer,’ says Blanc. ‘That’s sustainable in itself because one of the biggest problems that the fashion industry needs to face is that it produces too many clothes. Our mission is to shift the focus on

From L. to R.: Ludovic and Mathilde Blanc

quality over quantity.’ I MK


- summer 2019 - 45

Lab vs Mine? A debate between two imporant players in the jewellery industry, De Beers and Swarovski, presented observations on ethics and sustainability


he debate around lab vs. mined diamonds has been

seven times less impactful on the environment than natural,

ongoing since the technology to synthesise the stones

but there are other conflicting reports. Cue confusion in the

arose in the 1950s.


Stephen Lussier, Executive Vice President Marketing at De

Lovegrove argues that it is easier to switch to clean energy

Beers, and Dax Lovegrove, Global Vice President Corporate

in a lab than in a mine. Lussier counters that diamond-bearing

Sustainability & Social Responsibility of Swarovski, debated the

rock Kimberlite has the potential to capture carbon, meaning

merits of each structure.

a chance to become not just carbon neutral, but carbon

De Beers is renowned for the mining of natural diamonds;

negative in mining. He also explains that labs cannot easily run

Swarovski for growing synthetic crystals. However, their

on renewable energy as the manufacturing process requires

allegiances cut.



announced jewellery




a continuous power input,

recently range


with no variations.







diamonds. De Beers has







of post-


diamond future for the

in industrial processes for

mining locations through



Advances now mean that






lab diamonds have the same

of land for every hectare

chemical composition and


carbon structure as mined

Lovegrove, however, says

diamonds. They have similar


optics. In a passing, visual


comparison they would be

massively in recent years,


mining still risks irreversible

The question as to which

while have


biodiversity improved

damage to sensitive eco-

is better remains to be answered. As Lussier notes, their benefits differ.


systems. The ethics of the processes are also of key importance.

Lussier explains that natural diamonds are finite due

Natural mining has long had negative connotations due to

to their long and non-replicable creation process. They are

conflict diamonds. Lussier clarifies that, although twenty years

therefore more expensive, with an inherent preciousness due

ago around four percent of diamonds produced were linked to

to their rarity. Their value endures and increases over time, as

these regions, there is now peace in those areas.

they become scarcer.

Lussier also emphasises the vast human commitments in

Lab diamonds can be mass produced. Costs are therefore

the mining industry, which benefit developing countries. He

lower, and will decrease further as technology advances. Due

cites the 77,000 people employed worldwide by the industry,

to their cheaper production costs, synthetic diamonds can

often at up to 65 percent above the living wage for skilled jobs.

be used in more creative ways, from drilling holes to creating

Net benefits are $16Bn per year, 60 percent of which is injected

different coloured stones.

back into the local communities.

But Lovegrove dismisses the ‘real or not real’ debate

Lussier and Lovegrove therefore both highlight the

as ‘irrelevant’. The question should be: responsible or not

importance of traceability for the two types of diamond. If


the source and supply chain are not clearly defined, this can

SUSTAINABILIT Y, RESPONSIBILIT Y AND ETHICS Lovegrove says that reports on the environmental impact of each are mixed. A recent study reported that lab diamonds are

46 - info - summer 2019

influence the trust of consumers. Conscious customers want to know the ‘real deal’. In this vein, Lovegrove counsels ‘radical transparency.' As with diamonds, it seems the question of clarity for consumers is of the utmost importance. I SL


DIAMONDS under the loupe Trends in experiential luxury and coloured diamonds are leading a market segment operating under ethical guidelines, says Alessandro Borruso, Head of Sales for Sotheby’s Diamonds, Europe


o see a diamond under ten times magnification – such as with a standard jeweller’s loupe – is to enter a completely new world. Delicate angles are refracted and inclusions

invisible to the naked eye come into focus, giving the stone its unique character – and a set of distinguishing marks that experts use to differentiate specific gems. This is luxury 300 million years in the making – with the oldest diamond deposits believed to be more than three billion years old. ‘What you are seeing is the finger-print of the stone,’ says Alessandro Borruso, former geologist and Head of Sales, Sotheby’s Diamonds, Europe. It is the information which is included on the stone’s ‘passport,’ a set of documents which set out the stone’s provenance and unique characteristics. Borruso,






Sotheby’s around the world, says that ethical sourcing is frequently asked about by prospective buyers, closely followed by queries about the investment potential of the stones. He believes that questions about sourcing are also related to the rise in experiential luxury – a broader trend in the luxury segment often described as ‘being’ rather than ‘owning.' ‘Clients want to know the story behind the diamond, of course to make sure that it is ethically sourced, but also because they want to understand the rarity on a geological level and the craftsmanship that goes into taking the raw material and turning it into an object of pure beauty,’ says Borruso. ‘They want a unique piece and a unique story to tell.’ Sotheby’s Diamonds operates in partnership with Diacore, world-leading specialists in sourcing, cutting and polishing

Clients want to know the story behind the diamond to make sure that it is ethically sourced, but also to understand the craftsmanship that goes into taking the raw material and turning into an object of pure beauty

extraordinary diamonds. Renowned within the industry, their artisan cutters have sculpted some of the finest diamonds ever to appear on the market.


at Sotheby’s New York headquarters as part of a world tour for clients. According to Borruso, not only are coloured diamonds

Sotheby's Diamonds was founded in 2005 by Patti Wong,

extremely rare, but they also have seen a massive increase in

Chairman of Sotheby’s Asia, and has salons in London, Hong

interest from customers looking for one-of-a-kind pieces. There

Kong and New York and exhibits its collection around the

are naturally occurring examples with hues of yellow, pink,

world. Recent highlights include the sale of the rarest white

red and green. A recent study by the Fancy Colour Research

diamond ever to come to the market – a 102.34 carat stone

Foundation (FCRF), which promotes fair-trade, ethical standards

known as the world’s largest round, 'd' colour, flawless diamond

and transparency in the coloured diamond trade, found that

– and a recent collaboration with London-based, Brazilian-bred

sales in yellow diamonds have increased by 81 percent in the

jewellery designer, Lily Gabriella.

past ten years. Rose coloured diamonds increased by 177

Lily Gabriella's collection includes ornate rings and earrings

percent in the same time frame.

created using naturally-occurring yellow-coloured diamonds.

‘At the end of the day, diamonds are an emotional

Her nine one-of-a-kind creations, under the name Ode to

investment,’ says Borruso, who worked with the artist Damien

Yellow, were unveiled in February at Sotheby’s Diamonds retail

Hirst on his iconic diamond-encrusted skull. ‘When you start to

space in London, and six of the jewels were recently on display

learn about them, you can see that no diamond is alike.’ I


- summer 2019 - 47

Starting sustainably:

Sustainable Start-Up Award 2019 Five start-ups pitched to three Jury and 200 audience members to convince them of the merit of their companies at the LLTT 2019


rom 18 applicants, the shortlisted start-ups were

website. In this way, brands sell sustainability with styles,

whittled down to five. On the day of the London

which increases ROI.

Luxury Think Tank, this final selection had five

minutes each to present their solution to a live audience

• Nineteenth Amendment, presented by Amanda

and the jury of 13 people. The three co-presidents of the

Curtis, Co-founder & CEO. Nineteenth Amendment uses

jury had the time to pose one question to each start-up,

localised production and machine learning to disrupt a

before conferring privately for one hour with their fellow

traditional manufacturing. Their scalable and sustainable

jury members. During this time, votes also poured in

production platform requires no inventory, shortens

from the audience members via the specially created app

manufacturing time, and creates a transparent luxury

of the LLTT. Both the public vote and the jury members

experience for consumers.

concluded that the winner of the inaugural 2019 Start-Up Award was HURR Collective.

• Reflaunt, presented by Felix Winckler , Co-

Caroline Rush CBE, member of the Jury and Chief

Founder & CEO Reflaunt is a technology that promotes

Executive of the British Fashion Council, explained that the

circular economy by connecting brands with the secondary

potential of the HURR solution to incite a move away from

market. The technology allows customers of brands to

fast fashion is an admirable aim, well suiting the LLTT’s

resell, donate or recycle their past purchases directly from

central theme of Sustainable Luxury.

the e-commerce site of the brand or the retailer.

Thanks to all the start-ups who applied and presented, and best of luck for the future!

• Sana Jardin, presented by Amy Christiansen SiAhmed, Founder & CEO. Sana Jardin is an award-winning


sustainable luxury fragrance house that was created as a

• FavourUp, presented by Andre Wang, Chief

vehicle for social change to empower Moroccan women

Executive Officer. FavourUp helps ethical fashion brands

through flower recycling. Its alternative business model

communicate sustainability through influencer content

illustrates that luxury commerce can create social impact

across all touchpoints, especially on the e-commerce

through the upcycling of waste product. I

PRIZES FOR THE WINNER • A two-hour workshop to discover over 5,000 materials with a lower environmental impact (Kindly offered by The Sustainable Angle) • A place on a six-month mentoring programme (Kindly offered by Momentom 8) • A day of digital training selected from a variety of modules and access to 100 hours of pro-bono product design work (Kindly offered by Matter of Form) • The opportunity to be considered as a speaker at a relevant future event at the United Nations headquarters (Kindly offered by the United Nations Office for Partnerships) • Participation in three events, to be selected from Walpole’s exciting programme of masterclasses, dinners and workshops, and visibility throughout the Walpole’s 24,000 strong luxury community (Kindly offered by Walpole) • A Corporate membership (Kindly offered by the French Chamber of Great Britain)

48 - info - spring 2019

Winner Sustainable Start-up Award –

HURR Collective INFO magazine speaks with Victoria Prew, Co-Founder & CEO of HURR Collective, winner of the Sustainable Start-Up Award


URR Collective won the inaugural Sustainable Start-Up Award, to end the London Luxury Think Tank on a celebratory note. Out of the field of five

shortlisted candidates, HURR stood out with an interesting and innovative concept, getting to the heart of the sustainability theme. HURR positions itself as the Airbnb of Fashion, to allow women to make money from the pieces they already own, and also rent designer items for a fraction of the retail price. Victoria Prew, Co-Founder & CEO, says that the rise of the sharing economy and its impact on our day to day lives led to the company’s creation. The concept of sustainability was another crucial element in its inception. ‘As one of the world’s most polluting industries, I really believed fashion was the next big industry that was ripe for disruption,’ she says. A solution was therefore required to mitigate against this pollution, which is inherent to the production process for textiles. And what better way than to avoid this process than by reusing existing materials. ‘Extending the lifespan of your clothes is one of the best things you can do to

Extending the lifespan of your clothes is one of the best things you can do to reduce the environmental impact of your wardrobe

reduce the environmental impact of your wardrobe,’ says Prew. As a peer-to-peer marketplace, HURR allows consumers

virtual wardrobe that’s both affordable and accessible. In

to monetise their wardrobe by renting out pieces. They

order to do this, she aims to change the way millennials

also partner with the UK charity providing convenient ways

consume fashion.

to reuse your clothes, TRAID, on their 23% campaign. This

This vision can only be realised by ensuring a trustworthy

has the aim of advancing the United Nations’ Sustainable

service. ‘As a tech company, we’re really focused on

Development Goal Number 12, ensuring sustainable

ensuring that it’s safe and secure to rent your wardrobe,’

consumption and production. ‘It's estimated that 23

says Prew. ‘Trust is at our core, so we’ve worked hard from

percent of Londoners' wardrobes are unworn [so the

day one to ensure the vetting and review processes are

initiative has the] aim to put 123 million items of unworn

right to build a trusted and like-minded community.’

clothes back into use,’ says Prew.

Prew will now use her win of the Sustainable Start-

At the same time, HURR users join a community of

Up Award as a stepping stone to build on the contacts

forward-thinking people who believe renting makes both

made at the Think Tank to develop the business. ‘It was

economic and environmental sense. A large part of this

great to network with individuals across the luxury and

community comprises millennials, a generation with

sustainability sectors and we're thrilled to have won!’ says

greater awareness of sustainable issues.

Prew. ‘I believe that collaboration is key within the start-

‘Our target market is aware of the impact of fast fashion,

up world. It was an honour to win the award, and we're

and prizes "access” over “ownership”,’ says Prew. Her vision

busy developing new relationships, exploring potential

is of a world where renting is the norm, with an unlimited

partnerships and following up on leads from the event.’ I


- summer 2019 - 49



© The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Courtesy the Jewish Museum, New York

© The Pollock Krasner Foundation. © 2018. Digital Image Museum Associates LACMAArt

Lee Krasner : Living Colour

Left: Lee Krasner Self-portrait (c.1882) Right: Desert Moon (1952), Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

‘I like a canvas to breathe and be alive. Be alive is the point.’ Lee Krasner The Barbican Art Gallery presents the first retrospective in Europe for over 50 years of American artist Lee Krasner (1908 – 1984). One of the pioneers of Abstract Expressionism, Krasner made work reflecting the feeling of possibility and experiment in New York in the post-war period. Lee Krasner: Living Colour features nearly 100 works – many on show in the UK for the first time – from across her 50-year career, and tells the story of a formidable artist whose importance has often been eclipsed by her marriage to Jackson Pollock. I 30 May – 1 September 2019 – Tickets available from £15

D ES I G N M USEU M , LO N D O N Stanley Kubrick: The Exhibition The Design Museum, London celebrates the work of one of the greatest filmmakers of the 20th century. For the 20th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick’s death, the Design Museum celebrated the work of one of the greatest filmmakers of the 20th century. The exhibition explores his unique command of the whole creative design process of film making, Commenting the exhibition, Steven Spielberg said : ‘to all film lovers and filmmakers, if you want to understand and experience how Stanley Kubrick created these unforgettable worlds don’t miss this wonderful exhibition at the Design Museum in London.’ I 26 April – 15 September 2019 – Tickets available from £16 Right: Stanley Kubrick and Jack Nicholson on the set of The Shining.

50 - info - summer 2019

© Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

from story teller to director to editor.


K ENS I N GTO N PA L AC E, LO N D O N Kensington Palace celebrates 200th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s birth To mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Queen Victoria at Kensington Palace, this summer, its picturesque Sunken Garden will bloom with a special display created by Historic Royal Palaces gardeners. Visitors to the gardens will be treated to a rich colour palate of deep mauves, reds and oranges, all influenced by Victorian interiors, and reflective of the colours the young princess would have been surrounded by. Meanwhile, inside the palace, two new displays will be unveiled on 24 May, which would have been the monarch’s 200th birthday. The suite of rooms she and her mother occupied will © Historic Royal Palaces/Richard Lea-Hair

be reimagined in an evocative and family-friendly exploration of life at Kensington in Victoria: A Royal Childhood, while a new exhibition entitled Victoria: Woman and Crown will consider the private woman behind the public monarch, and re-examine her later life and legacy. I From 24 May – Tickets available from £17.50

CH ATSWO RT H H O US E, D ERBYSH I RE The Dog: a Celebration at Chatsworth Man’s best friend will take centre stage at Chatsworth during

of exceptional works from artists such as Constable, Stubbs,

2019 as the Cavendish family celebrate their love of dogs over

Gainsborough and Landseer sitting alongside contemporary

the centuries as part of an action-packed new season of events,

pieces by David Hockney, Lucian Freud, Jeff Koons, Antony

activities and exhibitions.

Gormley and Elisabeth Frink. I 23 March – 6 October 2019 – Tickets available from £13

© Jonty Wilde

© Scott Merrylees

The Dog: A Celebration at Chatsworth is a new exhibition

Left: Ben Long's scaffolding dog sculpture (2019) with Chatsworth house and canal pond Right: Greyhound with her two puppies suckling by Joseph Gott


- summer 2019 - 51

WO RL D M USEU M , L IVERP O O L Astronomy Photographer of the Year

© üukasz Sujka

A half century on from the moon landing, visitors to Liverpool’s World Museum this spring are invited to experience an Earth’s-eyeview of the universe in the exhibition, Astronomy Photographer of the Year. It features 100 awe-inspiring photographs that include the winners and shortlisted images from the 2018 competition. The competition is organised by the Royal Observatory Greenwich. In 2018, more than 4,200 entries from amateur and professional photographers from 91 countries were received. Images selected for the exhibition feature a mesmerising mosaic of the Great Orion and the Running Man Nebula; a magical scene of an Aurora Borealis exploding over the south coast of Iceland and a solar transit of the International Space Station between the massive sunspots AR 12674 and AR 12673. I 3 May – 1 September 2019 – Free entrance AR 2665 and Quiescent Prominence

N AT I O N A L M USEU M O F SCOT L A N D, ED I N BU RG H Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland This major exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland will tell

Wild and Majestic: Romantic Visions of Scotland spans the

the fascinating story of how tartan, bagpipes and rugged, wild

period from the final defeat of the Jacobites at the Battle of

landscapes became established as enduring, internationally

Culloden in 1746 to the death of Queen Victoria in 1901. Over

recognised symbols of Scottish identity and how Scotland

300 objects will be on display, drawn from the collections of

became established in the popular imagination as a land of

National Museums Scotland and 38 lenders across the UK. I

wilderness, heroism and history.

26 June – 10 November 2019 – Tickets available from £10

Left: Pompeo Battoni, Col William Gordon of Fyvie, 1766, credit National Trust for Scotland, Fyvie Castle Right: John Knox, Landscape with Tourists at Loch Katrine, oil on canvas, 1815, credit National Galleries of Scotland

52 - info - summer 2019





by Négar

by Jean-Baptiste

Djavadi Published by Europa Editions Translated by Tina Kover Original title: Désorientale

Del Amo

Published by Fitzcarraldo Translated by Frank Original title: Règne

Wynne animal

In the waiting room of a Parisian fertility clinic, Kimiâ Sadr is faced

Peopled with nightmarish, earthy characters such as the genetrix,

by the resurfacing of forgotten memories of her life in Iran. From

Animalia follows a family of peasants for four generations,

her grandmother’s birth in a late 19th-century harem to fleeing

through the 20th century, as their family exploitation becomes

the Shah’s police at the age of 10 and escaping to Paris, the

an intensive pig farm as they face animal brutality, the two world

narration intertwines personal memories and the historical facts

wars, economic disasters and the pressure of capitalism. Del

of political turmoil, reuniting in the figure of this 25-year-old punk

Amo portrays the cruelty of man, his desire to conquer nature

rocker. By focusing on her closest relationships, she explores the

and to subdue others through violence, with a graphic prose

theme of integration to another culture, and recreation of her

reflecting the aggression it describes. I

identity. I



by Anna

by Madeleine

Bourdouxhe Press Translated by Faith Evans Original title: Un clou, une rose

Gavalda Published by Europa Editions Translated by Alison Anderson Original title: Fendre l’armure

Published by Pushkin

In this collection of short stories in the first person, the reader is

Along the pages of seven short stories, Bourdouxhe lifts the

invited to step in the intimate universe of a variety of colourful,

veil and explores snippets of the conflicted inner lives of seven

broken, momentary protagonists. From putting one’s dog to

ordinary women. One of them experiences the pain of heartbreak,

sleep as a strange coping mechanism to facing alcoholism or

only to find herself both the idol and the victim of a stranger, madly

attempting to break free from one’s stifling, military milieu, the

in love with her. Another borrows her mistress’s expensive clothes

collection is filled with tales of suffering and salvation. Gavalda’s

to rise above her condition as a maid, only to realise that what she

characters are solitary, lost creatures, depicted with great

is really looking for is to grow closer to that same woman, who

tenderness, and whose complex situations are both touching

haunts her fantasies. I

and humbling. I


- summer 2019 - 53


AT T H E WA L L AC E CO L L EC T I O N A unique retrospective of the fashion icon’s work is underway at the famed London gallery


is shoes are icons of women’s

Alongside the exhibition, a series of

fashion, and for the first time,

panel talks explore the themes which

pieces from the private archives

permeate Manolo Blahnik’s designs and

of Manolo Blahnik will be on display at

the works contained within the Wallace

a major retrospective of his work at the


Wallace Collection in London.

The alignment between footwear

When you are wearing his shoes, you are wearing a work of art 1968, when he worked at the Zapata

An Enquiring Mind: Manolo Blahnik at

and art has been central to the approach


the Wallace Collection is set among the

Blahnik has employed in his more than

photographer for The Sunday Times

masterpieces of the gallery’s permanent

45-year career as one of the most


holdings, famed for their collection of

influential figures in the fashion industry.

‘He knows the collection well,’ said

18th Century Old Master paintings,

His choice to showcase never-

Dr Xavier Bray, Director of the Wallace

furniture and decorative objects. The

before-seen pieces, as well as some

Collection, who was first introduced

exhibition is a unique juxtaposition of

of his concept illustrations, is not a

to Blahnik in 2018. ‘That’s what draws

iconic pieces of contemporary fashion

coincidence. He has been visiting the

Manolo to the Wallace, the high quality

and the art which adorns the gallery.

gallery since he moved to London in

of hand-made objects and their sense as





© David Hughes

© The Wallace Collection


54 - info - summer 2019

© The Wallace Collection

An Enquiring Mind - Manolo Blahnik at the Wallace Collection © The Wallace Collection


Wallace, the son of the 4th Marquess. It

An Enquiring Mind: Manolo Blahnik

Bray and his team were given carte

was bequeathed to the British nation

at the Wallace Collection from 10

blanche to select 150 shoes for the

by Sir Richard's widow, Lady Wallace,

June – 1 September / free entry

exhibition and immediately began to

in 1897. I

luxury items.’

make aesthetic connections with the works of art in their gallery. A shoe with an organic foliage concept was associated with the work of Francois Boucher, a French 18th Century painter in the Rococo-style. The gold and brass which adorns certain shoes fits naturally with the bronze inlays of the gallery's 18th Century furniture. According to Bray, it is the first art gallery to interconnect Manolo’s shoes with other objects – which he sees as a natural extension of Manolo’s artistic approach. ‘At the end of the day, when you are OLVIDA © Manolo Blahnik

wearing his shoes, you are wearing a work of art,’ said Bray. The Wallace Collection is a national museum which displays the wonderful works of art collected in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries by the first four Marquesses of Hertford and Sir Richard


- summer 2019 - 55


ROSÉ ON THE RISE Wine Story Can Bordeaux Rosé reach the heights of its more popular counterparts from the region?


ccording to Jérôme Pernot, Head of Marketing for the

relaunch campaign last year is en route to becoming the star

Provence vineyard Chateau Leoube, the local rosé is

of Bordeaux Rosé, wining many awards and breaking sales

growing in popularity and appeal – a project fifteen years in the

records in the US market. The brand is owned by Tom Sullivan,


a successful American entrepreneur, who also owns Chateaux

‘It has been a long process to educate the consumer that rosé isn’t just a cheap, sweet wine to drink during the summer,’

in Bordeaux, Gaby in Canon-Fronsac, Du Parc in Saint-Emilion Grand Cru and Moya in Castillon Cotes de Bordeaux.

he said in the recent interview in Drink Business magazine. ‘We

The organically farmed Château Auguste is a 74-acre

need to get the message out that many rosés are made using

Bordeaux Superieur estate, located in the Right Bank region

the highest quality standards and

of Bordeaux within the Entre-

not with leftover juice or grapes.’


Last year, exports of Provence


appellation. name



wines surged, exceeding 54 million

Mers – translated as ‘between

bottles, with a value reaching

two seas’ – refers to the Garonne

£210m. In 10 years, exports have

and Dordogne rivers that form

grown six-fold. A decade ago, only

the boundaries of this triangular

eleven percent of Provence wines

region. For thousands of years,

were exported.

the two rivers have deposited

In the UK, rosé accounted for

sand and gravel, building up a sub

seven percent of sales in 2017

rock of limestone. Given the fertile

– compared with 52 percent for


white wines and 41 percent for

first to plant vineyards here, with

red. However, value sales of rose

monks later developing the area

are growing faster (+5%) than

during the Middle Ages.

volume (+4%) – a trend that has continued for the past five years. The premium rosé market centres






The wine has been described as ‘crisp and refreshing, with flavours





strawberries.' Others have noted

consumer profiles: those for whom

its vivid pale pink with mineral-

the ‘brand’ is rosé; those who buy

accented strawberry, red currant

according to their familiarity; and

and tangerine scents. This wine

those wanting a significant step up

could pair with many dishes such

in quality. Provence and its high-

as lobster, seared salmon or tuna,

end brands, such as the trendy

and meat dishes such a turkey. It

Whispering Angels, and Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s estate

would work equally well with pasta and risotto, paella, Japanese

Miraval, are two popular choices with wine drinkers.

fish dishes, or as salads and vegetarian dishes.

The commercial success of paler pinks has greatly

The Provence Rosé has a longer aromatic persistence than

influenced other wine-producing regions. ‘The grand cru of rosé

its more famous counterparts, without using any wood-aging,

is Provence, and the Languedoc, Rhône, Loire and Bordeaux

keeping it as natural as possible. As the wines continue to

are changing the style of their rosés to match the expectations

establish themselves in foreign markets, they represent great

of the market,’ says the Bordeaux winemaker Mathieu Crosnier.

value for money and are just what many consumers are looking for in a cool summer wine. I Thibault Lavergne

One newcomer is Chateau Auguste, which after a successful


56 - info - summer 2019


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Have a great summer!


e are pleased to present this special issue of the

Chamber’s Brexit Forum, Katherine Bennett CBE, Senior

magazine, which builds on the success of the

Vice President of Airbus, Mike Hughes, Zone President UK &

second edition of the London Luxury Think Tank,

Ireland of Schneider Electric, and Guillaume Bazard, Consul

in partnership with Walpole and the United Nations Office for Partnerships held this year at Spring Studios. With more

Général de France. We will look to develop our activities further after the

than 240 attendees and 30 inspirational speakers taking part

summer, following a review of our Working Groups which are

in a day of panels, debates, keynotes and networking, the

not only focused on developing services around Brexit and

event succeeded in underlining the urgent need to move to

how we can better accompany our member companies in this

sustainable business practices, and showcased innovative

context, but also on digital UX for our members, on values and

approaches across the luxury industry. (Reports from the

corporate purpose, and even more importantly, on always

conference begin on page 30.)

bringing more value for money to our members by analysing

This issue also follows on from our Annual General Meeting in June, where we had the chance to reflect back on 2018 – a challenging year yet one where we registered many

their needs and adapting our current offer. Finally, I would like to congratulate Fabienne Viala who was elected as President of the French Chamber and to

successes, including our Retail Conference, the launch of

Fabrice Bernhard, co-founder and CTO of Theodo, who was

LeBridge, and a good financial result despite the uncertainty

appointed by the Board to succeed Stephen Burgin as Deputy

linked to Brexit.

President. We are the first French Chamber abroad to appoint

Indeed, Brexit continues to be an important focus of our

a start-up founder as DP, thus sending a strong message to

activities. We have increased our efforts to share information

the growing number of start-ups and SMEs on this side of the

and best-practice across the membership, from the Brexit

Channel. I would like to thank Stephen for his support to the

pages in this magazine, to Forums & Clubs dedicated to

Chamber over the years, and for stepping in to lead the team

Brexit, to a series of dinners and events like the recent debate

in my absence last year.

we hosted at L’Institut Francais with Dominic Grieve QC MP, Neil Sherlock, Senior Advisor to PwC and Chair of the French 58 - info - summer 2019

Let me conclude by wishing you a pleasant and restful summer break. I FG


French Chamber of Great Britain wins innovation award for LEBRIDGE18


lorence Gomez, Managing Director of the French Chamber, accepted the Prix Innovation 2019 award at the annual conference of the Directors of French Foreign Chambers in Paris. The award recognised the Chamber’s innovation in launching LEBRIDGE, an event and networking platform connecting large corporates with start-ups to generate business. There are plans to export the concept to other French Chamber’s internationally, demonstrating our position as a pioneering Chamber committed to responding our members’ needs and embracing new ways of working. Event organiser and Start-up Lab Manager, David Johnson, credited the success of the inaugural LEBRIDGE18 to a collaborative and open approach to working with partners and strong branding in line with the values of the event. ‘To bring together thirteen corporations and more than forty start-ups was a huge success and we were thrilled at the response from our members at the event. With this award, we are delighted with the international interest it received, and we remain committed to bringing together a team to deliver an even better LEBRIDGE this year.’ LEBRIDGE19 will take place in winter 2019, with returning event co-organising partners Early Metrics and Microsoft for Startups already on board. I

Fabrice Bernhard appointed as Deputy President of the French Chamber of Great Britain


he French Chamber has announced the election of Fabrice Bernhard as its new Deputy President at the French Chamber’s Annual General Meeting on Thursday 20 June 2019. He will bring his entrepreneurial and digital native experience to support the continuing success of the Chamber. Bernhard is a graduate of the École Polytechnique and a seasoned entrepreneur. He co-founded the web and mobile development company Theodo in 2009. Last year, the company registered €30m in revenue, and it is regularly ranked as one of the best start-ups to work for in France. The company is now in the process of international expansion, employing more than 40 people in the UK, and having launched an office in New York at the beginning of the year. I

The Chamber welcomes Marie Protat as Head of Communications and Digital Transformation


arie Protat is a specialist in Digital Marketing and Communications with experience in France, Argentina and the UK, and holds a Master’s degree in Marketing, Communications and Business Strategy. Prior to joining the Chamber, she worked in the arts sector for contemporary art galleries and for four years with the artist Damien Hirst’s company Science (UK). She is looking forward to tackling the challenge of the Chamber’s ongoing digital transformation, as well as working with the network and Chamber members. She can be reached at I


- summer 2019 - 59


From Heritage to Innovation The Chamber AGM was a chance to celebrate the successes of the team in 2018


he Annual General Meeting of the

which took place after the meeting.

French Chamber of Great Britain

Florence Gomez, Managing

welcomed 109 new companies to the dynamic membership network.

was held at the law firm Reed Smith,

Director, delivered a presentation on

offering stunning views of the city from

the performance of the Chamber in

135th anniversary and launched the very

the 32nd floor of their London offices.

2018, and highlighted areas of priority

successful LeBridge, bringing together

for 2019. Despite challenges and the

blue chips and start-ups to generate

Viala, opened the proceedings by

impact of Brexit on our activity, the

dialogue, cooperation and business

welcoming Chamber members and

Chamber recorded another successful


staff. She announced that the agenda

year of operation.

Chamber President Fabienne

of the French Ambassador, Jean-Pierre

Her remarks included thanking the

In 2018, the Chamber celebrated its

The Chamber launched a new website, which is easier to use and more

Jouyet, had changed and that he would

Directors of the Board for their support

graphically impactful. Members can now

unfortunately not be able to join the

over this time, and specifically Steve

access a dedicated ‘lounge’ where they

meeting as planned.

Burgin for leading the Chamber in her

can update their contact details and

absence. She also thanked her team for

preferences, connect with each other,

their excellent work.

benefit from member offers and access

She thanked Jean-Christophe Donnellier, Minister Counsellor for Economic and Financial Affairs, who

Nicholas Ribollet, Partner of Mazars

all Chamber services.

delivered a speech on behalf of the

and French Chamber Treasurer,

Embassy. Ms Viala also acknowledged

reported on the financial performance

Chamber activities – especially

and thanked Rosie Gorman, Head of

of the Chamber.

sponsorship and advertising – however

Protocol at the French Embassy, for her attendance. Finally, she thanked Reed Smith and

Financial performance and activities

Brexit did have an impact on

it managed to expand business support services, which assisted a total of 234 French SMEs and start-ups in their

Peter Alfandary for kindly hosting the

The meeting heard that the Chamber

UK set-up and recruitment needs,

AGM for the 10th consecutive year and

recorded a turnover of +£2,278k and

accountancy and payroll outsourcing

for sponsoring the cocktail reception

pre-tax profits of £53K in 2018, and it

services. This clearly demonstrates that

60 - info - summer 2019


Brexit did have an impact on Chamber activities - especially on sponsorship and advertising - however it managed to expand business support services, which assisted a total of 234 French SMEs and start-ups in their UK set-up and recruitment needs

French companies continue to cross

Brexit, on Digital UX for our members,

fast-growing digital consultancy Theodo

the Channel as they feel it is more

on values and corporate purpose,

as the new Deputy President. Bernhard

important than ever to have a foot in

and on always bringing more value for

succeeds Stephen Burgin, Former Vice

both countries.

money for members by analysing their

President of Alstom, who delivered a

needs and adapting our current offer.

farewell speech at the event.

2019 outlook

To help with these objectives, new

Peter Alfandary, Senior Vice

Reports included the forecast that 2019

functionalities will be developed on

President of the Chamber, led the

will not be an easy year, as the new date

our website: online registration to

votes on the board members. There

for a potential Brexit outcome is now

events and Forum and Club sessions

were six vacancies on the board, which

31 October, thus prolonging the current

with automatic calendar updates;

were all filled. These include Fabienne

period of uncertainty.

online payment; accessing CVs and

Viala, Chairman of Bouygues, Katherine

job offers as well as a new informative

Bennett CBE, Senior Vice President

more prudence. According to the

Brexit section with FAQs, and the latest

of Airbus, Fabrice Bernhard CTO of

Chamber’s Brexit Survey (March 2019),

information and useful links.

Theodo, Bénédicte Duval, General

In such periods, companies show

42.4 percent of companies polled said

2019 also marks the 40th

Manager of Air France-KLM, and Hugo

that they had extra costs as a result of

anniversary of INFO magazine. The

Fry, Managing Director of Sanofi UK.

Brexit. Also, 60 percent said that one

much-loved magazine of the Chamber

Three existing board members were

of the main disruptive factors are the

will be adapted to a quarterly format

re-elected including, Helena Kavanagh,

access to skilled and unskilled labour,

with an increased digital presence, and

Managing Director at JC Decaux, Olivier

followed by 26 percent saying that it’s

regular editions on critical business

Morel, Partner of Cripps Pemberton

the shifts in the value of sterling.

issues will be published seasonally.

Greenish, Olivier Nicolay, General

Further to the Strategy Board meeting in January 2019, four working

Election results

groups have been put in place. They will

The meeting saw the election of Fabrice

focus on developing services around

Bernhard, CTO and co-Founder of the

Manager of Chanel UK & Ireland, and Simone Rossi, CEO of EDF Energy. I


- summer 2019 - 61

for anglo-french business er of commerce in great britain

may / june 2012



In a year when the Chamber hosted its second edition of the London Luxury Think Tank, here we reflect on the past coverage of the luxury sector in the pages of the INFO. Luxury French brands have been and continue to be an important segment of the membership, showcasing the best in French design and elegance, and our insight and editorial content has reflected a sophisticated view of the industry

Luxury goes from strength to strength


I N F O the magazine for anglo-french business french chamber of commerce in great britain

uxury is the exception that proves the rule. So opens a Focus section which details

a booming luxury industry at a time when the average consumer was cutting back on his or her spending. The articles and interviews that followed credited this success to a mix of factors: the influx of new Chinese money, depressed stock markets, and growing disparities of wealth leading to new consumer spending and demands. I


es with

Lucia van der Post defines luxury

laduree celebrates 150th anniversary

cess story

the new french government

edf championing the olympics

n, MD of Hermès UK

de Castellane

may / june 2012

in this issue 5 minutes with

Lucia van der Post defines luxury

laduree celebrates 150th anniversary

the success story

the new french government

edf championing the olympics

Thierry Outin, MD of Hermès UK

of Cordelia de Castellane

INFO May/June 2012

covers2.indd 1-2

62 - info - summer 2019

23/05/2012 08:48:04

23/05/2012 08:48:04

1979 2019

Christian Dior’s fashion strategy


his issue quotes from fashion icon Christian Dior, who once had ambitions of being an architect: ‘Strictness of

construction, precision of cut, and the quality of execution are the features which made us stand out from the ordinary.’ With the quality of the garment second only to the creative inspiration behind it – described as ‘the purity of line, style and design’ – the article notes that each purchase of a Dior garment must be understood as an investment. I

INFO September/October 1983

Luxury Brands standing out


avin Mensah-Coker, former Trends Planner at Publicis, is cited in this issue saying that consumer confidence,

travel uncertainty, and changes in design and meaning were the key challenges faced by the luxury sector. Pitfalls for established brands include associating too closely with fashion rather than timelessness, such as when football hooligans start wearing Burberry caps. While the ‘symbiosis between luxury and fake’ was causing people to question whether a Louis Vuitton bag is real. He noted that: ‘Luxury is still the most obvious expression of what you don’t need. However, mass elitism has moved us on to decadence.’ I

INFO January/February 2004


- summer 2019 - 63


THE BUSINESS CENTRE: A SPRINGBOARD INTO THE UK Aimed at French Start-ups, entrepreneurs and SMEs that are developing their businesses in the UK, the French Chamber’s 20-desk Business Centre is currently home to 11 companies. Meet Agathe Montagnon, Account manager, Empreinte Signs Ltd

Agathe Montagnon, Account manager, EMPREINTE SIGNS LTD

Could you tell us more about Empreinte Signs? We are a sign company specialising in heritage, public realm and architectural schemes. We handle all stages of the manufacturing process and technical development for customised signage, from design to delivery. We support public realm and design of all outdoor and indoor signage projects, helping to showcase historic and natural heritage sites. We use our fabrication facilities which include natural ceramic signage and specialist steel fabrication. We are skilled and experienced in all printing techniques. Actually, we have built our reputation on our ability to reproduce any visual on enamelled lava stone, including famous painter’s Artwork, like the French impressionist painter Monet. What makes you specific as a signage company? We use Lavastone, a natural stone extracted from the French quarries in Volvic (vulcanos). This high-end product, derived from ancestral know-how, is one of the jewels of French craftsmanship. We were awarded with the ‘Living Heritage Company’ label by the French government in 2017. We are proud to have a very skilled and experienced team, composed of production experts, product designers, graphic designers, architects, screen-print operatives, assemblers. To achieve very-high standards, we are ISO 14001 (environment) and ISO 9001 (quality management system) certified. Why did your company decide to come to the UK? We have been manufacturing signage for UK projects for about 10 years now, and our historic clients are satisfied with our know-how. We work with enamelled lavastone known across the UK, because it’s the most durable and eco-friendly material that we recommend for interpretation heritage trails. Also, it is a huge challenge for us as the UK is known worldwide as a very creative and vibrant place with lots of designers that we want to meet! We have therefore decided to set up a local subsidiary, Empreinte Signs Ltd. What is the current challenge here in the UK? Our challenge now is to be known as a signage reference across the UK by designers and landscape architects interested in high quality signage. To achieve this goal, we have recently joined the Association for Heritage Interpretation and the Sign and Design Society. At the moment, we are very excited to see our current interpretation projects that are expected to spring up in a few months in Berwick Upon Tweed and Catterick. I Agathe Montagnon

To find out more about the Chamber’s Business Centre, please contact Sophie Bosc, Business Consultancy Project Manager, or 0207 092 6628

64 - info - summer 2019


RATP DEV UK – Passenger Land Transport

Represented by CATHERINE CHARDON, MANAGING DIRECTOR The trading name for our London Bus operations, RATP Dev London, operates bus services in and around the capital on behalf of Transport for London. Private Hire and Commercial Services as well as Council route contracts complete the make-up of our core business. Drawing on the knowledge of our historical past and the expertise of our parent company RATP Dev, we are confident in our ability and committed to achieving our vision of becoming ‘London’s number one bus operator’. Employing over 3,500 people, we maintain a fleet of some 1200 buses and are responsible for carrying 249 million passengers each year on 97 bus routes across the London network. Our services operate from eleven operational garages.


BRIOCHE PASQUIER UK A French Family Bakery since 1936 Represented by Olivier Ripoche, Managing Director Brioche Pasquier started in 1936 with Gabriel Pasquier’s bakery in Les Cerqueux, France. Over the years we have developed our Brioche, Pâtisserie, and Biscotte ranges. Today, we operate across 7 countries, 3 continents, and 18 factories with over 3,500 employees. We have over 40 years of experience and pride ourselves on offering delicious, traditional and innovative french bakery products. EIFA – INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL OF LONDON Independent school 18 months to 18 years Represented by Françoise Zurbach, Head of School EIFA School is a French and English International school located in the heart of Marylebone. Eifa prides itself to be the only school in the UK to teach all core subjects in two languages – French and English from 21 months to 17 years old in an environment small enough for individual attention. Eifa creatively combines the rigorous academic approach of the French curriculum with the breadth and excitement of the English one. EIFA is unique in its scope, its ambition and its relevance to today’s global child. HURR COLLECTIVE Wardrobe Rental Platform Represented by Victoria Prew, Co-Founder & CEO HURR Collective is the UK’s first peer-to-peer wardrobe rental platform. The invite-only community allows forward-thinking women to share their designer clothes and accessories. MADDYNESS Leading magazine in French start-ups and innovation Represented by Louis Carle, CEO Our team of journalists have chronicled the growing start-up scene in Europe and now every week thousands of readers from Europe, and the rest of the world, use Maddyness to be informed on many topics such as the technology business, start-ups, innovative ideas and more prospective stories about the future of mankind.


- summer 2019 - 65

NICHOLAS KIRKWOOD Luxury Shoe Brand Represented by Nina Zukanovic, Managing Director Challenging the conventions of luxury footwear, British designer Nicholas Kirkwood is recognised as one of this generation's leading talents. He launched his eponymous collection in Spring 2005 challenging the conventions of women's luxury footwear. To date, he has gained much critical acclaim for his spirited collections, which feature a blend of genres subverting the relationship between tradition and modernity. RATIONAL FOREIGN EXCHANGE French Payment Institution and Currency Exchange Represented by Rajesh Agrawal, Chairman and Deputy Mayor of London for Business and Enterprise A global foreign exchange and international payments company committed to providing our clients with payment solutions and great exchange rates. RationalFX is a leading international payments provider, having processed over £10bn since 2005 to more than 200 countries for 180,000 clients. RationalFX is authorised by the FCA and prides itself on secure, bank-beating rates, either over the phone or online 24/7. RIMILIA HOLDINGS LTD AI-driven financial software solutions provider Represented by Phil Coombs, Account Director Rimilia simplifies the complex with Intelligence finance software that enable customers to get paid on time and control their cashflow and cash collection in real-time. Our software solutions use sophisticated analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to predict customer payment behaviour and easily match and reconcile payments, removing the uncertainty of cash collection. SERGE BETSEN CONSULTING LTD Consulting, Teambuilding, Workshop, Conference, Wellbeing Represented by Serge Betsen, Director


ACTUALISE Search & Selection – Retained Executive Search for the Insurance sector - Represented by Nicolas Ladoucette, General Manager Bann’Up Services – Advertising for outdoor points of sale - Represented by Jean-Olivier Billès, Managing Director BKL – Chartered accountants and tax advisers - Represented by Julie Sanchez, Tax Assistant Bleu Comme Gris Limited – Luxury clothing and accessories lines for children - Represented by Stephane Marrapodi, Managing Director Brown Shipley – Private Banking and Wealth Management - Represented by Stanislas Sintive, Client Senior Manager International Equinor UK Limited – Energy - Represented by Laurent Poncet, Leader Strategy

66 - info - summer 2019


FavourUp – Influencer Content Intelligence for CSR Communication - Represented by Veronica Chang, CMO Go Demand Ltd – Lead & Demand Generation - Represented by Stephane West, Managing Director Ksubaka – Technology, AI, Retail Solutions, Business Solutions - Represented by Antoine Paul, Sales Director Laudescher – Manufacturer Timber acoustic cladding panels - Represented by Anne-Laure Dubourg, UK Country Manager Margo UK – Technology company helping with experts - Represented by Justin Paty, Head of Sales & BD Matter of Form Group – Category-leading brand strategy, experience design and digital transformation Represented by Emma Blackmore, Group Marketing Director Nineteenth Amendment – Platform for on-demand, quick turn apparel manufacturing - Represented by Amanda Curtis, CEO & Co-Founder Reflaunt – Resell technology - Represented by Felix Winckler, CCO RMM Conseil Limited – Consulting & Business Development Jewelry and Watches Represented by Romain Milaret, Director Sana Jardin Limited – The World’s First Socially Conscious Luxury Fragance House - Represented by Rolando Zabban, Managing Director Santander – Banking - Corporate & Commercial - Represented by Priscilla Hernandez, France & Belgium Alliances Director Sessùn – Womens wear, shoes and accessories conception and distribution - Represented by Christelle Martino, CFO SGK Inc. – Worldwide Leader in Pack & Content Development - Represented by Margot Jaremczuk, Business Development Director Step Concept – Manufacturing and sale of access steps and ramps for vehicles - Represented by Olivier Anet, Director Teach on Mars – Next-Generation Workplace Learning Software Publisher - Represented by Pierre Peigné, General Manager UK & Group Corp Devs The Instant Group – Global flexible workspace specialists - Represented by Edward Harbison, Corporate Marketing Manager The Resilience Institute – Training and consulting services in team and organisational resilience Represented by Thierry Moschetti, Partner U-Need Consulting – IT & Digital Consulting Company - Represented by Paul Marta de Andrade, Chief Executive Officer UK Vivien & Associés – Legal services - Represented by Simon Salter, Partner WorldFirst – International Payments Provider - Represented by James Read, Team Lead and Senior Partnership Sales info

- summer 2019 - 67


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authentic communication in a more

presented their expertise and

cost-effective way than many other

Mistakes to avoid

experience on the topic. The session

forms of marketing. Content shared by

It is important not to make the

was chaired by Fabrice Bernhard, CTO

employees receives eight times more

programme mandatory and, while

and Co-Founder, Theodo.

engagement than content shared by

incentivising ambassadors can be

brand channels, according to trend

successful, don’t put too much

watcher Social Media Today.

emphasis on it. EA is a two-value

Amanda Tran, Managing Director,

What is employee advocacy? Amanda Tran explains that employee

By sharing positive affirmations

training. Their visibility on professional

proposition based on volunteering and

advocacy (EA) is the practice of

about the company they work for,

should be motivational, not competitive.

encouraging employees to share

employees can also attract new talent to

Don’t stifle creativity in the process. EA

engaging content related to the

the business. Companies will also find

is all about trust, so allow employees to

company, industry and expertise to

retention rates and motivation increases

write their own content. I

their own social network. Building a

when employees are empowered to

How to implement an EA programme – 8-step guide 1. Define goals and KPIs: what are you trying to achieve and how do you measure success? 2. Select the EA ownership team 3. Audit internal resources: choose ambassadors and check current activity and knowledge of social media? 4. Build an editorial strategy: branded and curated content 5. Implement a tool to centralise content and measure success 6. Train ambassadors 7. Animate the community with regular meetups, conference calls and IRL meetings (lunch & learn, breakfast, incentives program) 8. Measure the impact, learn, improve

68 - info - summer 2019


Artificial Intelligence: Does it exist?

Sponsored by

The recent meeting of the Digital Transformation & Innovation Forum debated the existence of true Artificial Intelligence


he Merriam-Webster dictionary defines artificial intelligence (AI) as ‘the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent

human behaviour.’ This leaves wide scope for interpretation, as discussed by speakers at the latest Digital Transformation and Innovation Forum. Co-Chaired by Christophe Chazot, Managing Director at HSBC, and Fabrice Bernhard, Founder of Theodo, the session heard from Terence Tse, Co-Founder of Nexus FrontierTech and Professor at ESCP Europe Business School, and Clément Walter, PhD, Sicara.

The simple answer Terence Tse opened the session, with a direct response to the title question: does AI exist? He claims that it does not. He explains that currently machines learn from the user’s previous actions, and then uses this to guess the user’s future intentions. An example of this is predictive texting.

and processes. These need to be mapped to understand the individual tasks. Without this clarity, the system may not function as required or as effectively as would be otherwise possible. Delegating tasks to an AI system means a transfer of authority and decision-making prerogative. This risk must be weighed in light of how much control the human would wish to retain in any given scenario, according to Tse. Regardless of this relinquished control, the human is still

AI can only achieve narrow set objectives and tasks. It

required in the process. Inputs and outputs of the AI system

cannot strategise as this would involve complex layers of

should be monitored and checked frequently. If everything is

decision-making. As such, the machine guesses the appropriate

delegated to the AI, errors could creep in. Equally, the data or

next step. Tse concludes that this is therefore not intelligence.

input itself should be carefully considered to further mitigate

Implementing AI Tse uses this information to inform and define steps to follow when implementing an AI system.

against mistakes. Quantity should not be the primary concern. Inputting the right data is the key. Tse highlights that full integration of AI requires buy-in from the top. In order to ensure this outcome, he suggests aiming

The limited strategising capabilities of AI mean narrow-

for ‘low-hanging fruit.' The focus should be on projects that are

mindedness is a virtue, says Tse. Precision is required to define

easy to accomplish, with a clearly defined outcome. The return

what you want the AI to do, and what you are trying to achieve.

on investment would be easier to assess. Projects aiming

He explains that this is not possible without a full

to cut costs rather than expand revenue would adhere to

understanding of your own company’s capabilities, workflows

this principle. I

Sicara and an AI case study Sicara focuses on creating ‘real AI for real businesses.’ Their expertise centres on image recognition solutions. Dr Clément Walter, Sicara, spoke on its application to streamline workflows in the food industry, primarily through automating canteen payment processes. Clients enter the restaurant, fill their tray, and then pay. At payment, their food is scanned so they are billed correctly. There are a number of inputs to be considered in this scenario, for creating an AI interface. To ensure a faster time to production, a pragmatic approach must be taken. For example, a limited selection of foods recognisable by the algorithm can be filtered through a second till. AI can thus focus on incremental gains to grow the area of action for the AI system as more data is aggregated.


- summer 2019 - 69


GDPR: 12 months on

Sponsored by

Richard Nicholas, Partner, Technology, Data and Digital Business law at Browne Jacobson, reflects on GDPR coming into force in the UK over the past year


recent meeting of the Retail Forum welcomed Richard Nicholas, Partner at Browne Jacobson, as its guest

speaker. The session was held at Browne Jacobsen’s London offices, and was co-chaired by Alain Harfouche, General Manager of L’Occitane, and Catherine Palmer, General Counsel and HR Director of Joseph. This session covered some of the areas that have been clarified by case law, as well as some of the practical issues that Nicholas’ team have dealt with, working with retailers and business in different sectors. Nicholas reported that some common queries are not obvious results of GDPR, but rather side-effects of the legislation that have an impact on technology, business, retailers and cross-border trade. There was a time when GDPR was often spoken about,

There is precedent in terms of Vicarious Liability of

particularly in the press, but the issue has moved off the media

companies, notably in the case of the high street grocery chain

agenda. However, it has been keeping many law firms busy,

Morrisons vs. Various Claimants. Banking details, addresses

with Nicholas and his team having worked with more than one

and personal information of employees were leaked online by a

hundred businesses on their GDPR compliance alone.

former employee. Although Morrison’s did not carry out the leak

There are five key areas to consider, when reviewing the

and had trained its employees in GDPR, they were nonetheless

impact since GDPR was launched on 25 May 2018. These

held responsible, demonstrating that greater safeguards of

are: contracts, fines and compensations, vicarious liability,

data and insurance are necessary.

customers databases, and Brexit.

In terms of databases, there is a direct impact on email

Contracts are relatively easy to deal, compared with than

marketing to consumers and buying lists of consumer

other areas. There are key distinctions that need to be made

names is getting more difficult to do. Privacy and Electronic

between ‘data controllers’ and ‘data processors,’ with additional


working needed to be included in contracts which pose some

communications and give people privacy rights. However GDPR

practical challenges. In order to have access to data after

legislation changed the ‘consent’ value. People who consent

collection, a company needs to have ‘data controller’ status – if

must know where their data is going and who is going to send it.





this is not possible, the data holder has the legal title of 'data

In the context of no deal Brexit, the UK would be considered

processor.' Contracts can stipulate when data is returned to its

a ‘third country,’ and therefore any data transfers to the UK

owner or deleted from a database.

will be considered as transfers outside the EU. In this scenario,

To date, there have been no fines imposed under the UK

there do not appear to be serious issues for transfers to the UK

jurisdiction. However, within the policy arena there has been

from the EU; however, the situation is less clear on transfers

a shift from looking at fines as a penalty to looking at fines as

from the UK to the EU, and appropriate safeguards must be


integrated into contracts. I

Top tips • Be clear on the role of data processors vs controllers • ICO penalties are a potential threat, but civil claims are more significant • Get insurance, even if you are doing everything right • Before buying a marketing database, make sure you can use it

70 - info - summer 2019


Current & future consumer trends A recent meeting of the Consumer Brands Forum explored key trends and drivers in the sector


he latest session of the Consumer Brands Forum welcomed guest

health, convenience and regimes.

revolutions in the frozen food category,

There are three big disruptions

with new entrants Daily Harvest, String

speakers Chris Hayward, Head of

for the market going forward: the rise

Roots and an acquisition of Sweet Earth

UK Business Development at Kantar

and rise of sustainability, natural and

by industry giant Danone, all geared to

Worldpanel UK, and Christine Milan,

local; technology and personalisation;

re-conceptualising frozen food for the

Head of Strategy at Publicis UK. The

health and well-being. These lead to the

foodie generation.

session was chaired by Geoff Skingsley,

conclusions that consumer shifts mean

Chairman of L’Oréal UK.

that environmental concerns are higher

major trend, as brands tap into artificial

Chris Hayward of Kantar Worldpanel

Personalised nutrition is also a

up their agenda; the use of technology

intelligence, big data and social media

UK delivered a presentation on Shopper

in FMCG manifests itself most in the

trends to create healthier, ultra-tailored

Disruptions: The Shifts shaping the UK

growth of ecommerce; and health is top

choices for consumers, from test to

FMCG market. Hayward showed that

of mind for all consumers – whether by


UK households have two big themes

choice or by design.

influencing how they choose to spend

Christine Milan of Publicis UK

Users of the Nestlé Wellness Ambassador programme send

their money in 2019. The cost of

delivered a presentation on The

pictures of their food via the Line

housing and associated utilities (bills,

Dynamics of Beauty and what they can

app and receive lifestyle change

etc.) has risen from 22 percent of their

teach us. Her presentation included

recommendations and specially

disposable income 10 years ago.

an exploration of major evolutions

formulated supplements in return.

in the industry, including a move

The program reportedly costs USD

fashion and eating out all come under

from purchase and use to ongoing

600 annually for capsules that make

increased pressure as discretionary

engagement with brands, and this

nutrient-rich teas, smoothies and other

spend is reined back. His research

includes a shift from transaction to

products such as vitamin-fortified

shows that shoppers don’t really

interactions and standardisation to


care about Brexit, but they do care


When confidence is lower, holidays,

about what they hear and see, which

Brand experience has replaced

In an effort to promote wellness and deepen relationships with

influences their purchasing. Brexit

brand recognition and the price and

consumers, brands are also moving

factors which contributed to changed

value of a product is beginning to take a

beyond their products to offer services

behaviour include inflation, consumer

back seat to the life outcomes that the

and experiences that encourage self-

confidence, contracted growth. However

product bestows on consumers.


changes of greater magnitude were independent of Brexit and include

Milan highlighted three case studies in the food and drink space, including

The German supermarket chain Lidl hosted a series of 2018 summer pop-ups in Ireland, encouraging young people to speak openly about mental health issues. In addition to open discussions, the programme included events designed to promote mental well-being, such as laughter yoga, meditation and sing- along socials. I

Three big disruptions in the market: The rise and rise of sustainability, natural and local; Technology and personalisation; Health and Wellbeing info

- summer 2019 - 71


ETS: the European Union Emissions Trading System

Sponsored by

A recent meeting of the Climate Change & Sustainability Forum explored the EU ETS and sustainable finance


he session was held at Library, the private members club

general framework is an attempt to coordinate governments’

in London’s West End, and welcomed speakers Giulia

action to internalise externalities associated with greenhouse

Pavan, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Toulouse School of Economics, Laetitia Girolami-Boyer, Sustainable Finance

gas emissions (GHG). The European Union Emission Trading System is a cap-

Director, BNP Paribas CIB, and John Rosai, Head of European

and-trade scheme for GHG emission allowances. Regulated

Energy Trading, BNP Paribas. The meeting was chaired by

plants receive EU Allowance Units (EUA) tradable across plants

Nidhi Baiswar, Head of Sustainable Design, Bouygues UK,

in all countries participating to the scheme.

and Jean-Philippe Verdier, Founding Partner, Verdier & Co. Corporate Advisory.

In terms of current economic theory, it has been suggested that allocation systems do not affect market outcome. Classical theory states the market-economy fails to deal with pollution. Economic theory also shows that market-based instruments equalize the marginal cost of abatement. Market forces shift CO2 emissions to high-cost plants, which is more efficient because CO2 damages are global.

ETS phases John Rosai, BNP Paribas delivered a presentation outlining the phases of the EU ETS. Phase 1, from 2005-07, piloted the project, with almost all EUAs were allocated for free, based on historical emission levels. The System was massively oversupplied and a collapse in prices to zero occurred at the end of phase 1. Tighter emission caps were imposed in Phase 2 (2008-

Sustainability financing

12) by reducing the total volume of EUAs by 6.5 percent, and

Laetitia Girolami-Boyer, BNP Paribas, delivered a brief

stricter penalties for non-compliance were imposed. The

presentation on BNP Paribas’ sustainability-linked business

financial crisis in 2008 reduced industrial activity and emissions

loans. Green loans are a growth area since 2017, now

from EU countries, this combined with the additional credits

representing a market of roughly $60bn.

led to a collapse of EUA prices from €30/tonne to less than

The loans are not a green bond or ‘green financing’ in the traditional sense. They are business loans, small or large,

€10/tonne. The main challenge in the current phase 3 (2013-20) is

linked to a suitability agenda of the borrowing individual/

the large surplus of EUAs transferred from phase 2, which led

company. If the company out-preforms, it gets a better

to an average EUA price of €3/tonne to €8/tonne. Phase 4 is

re-payment rate; if it under-performs, it can have higher

scheduled to take place in 2021-2030. Brexit and UK allocation


are unclear – especially what this means for Phase 4 transition.

Rating agencies, including Standard & Poor’s, are working

According to Rosai, current market drivers for reducing

on a rating system linked sustainability loans. The loans

emissions are policies, followed by supply-side drivers like caps

represent a growth area for investors.

on EUA allocations and auctions and demand-side drivers like

EU ETS Giulia Pavan, Toulouse School of Economics, gave a

weather, fuel switching (gas/coal), utility behaviours and macroeconomic factors. Current market trends include a market size of nearly 1bn Euros of allowances every day. I

presentation on the Economic Effect of the EU ETS. The

Current market drivers for reducing emissions are policies, followed by supply-side drivers like caps on EUA allocations and auctions, and demand-side drivers like weather, fuel switching, and utility behaviour 72 - info - summer 2019


Digitalisation of finance functions

Sponsored by

The Finance Forum heard about the potential application of machine learning to different


he digital transformation of the finance function can

For example, in auditing investment funds, AI can be used

alleviate the workload of the human, allowing redistribution

to highlight discrepancies and therefore detect errors in

of human capital to value added activities. Participants at the most recent Finance Forum discovered

different scenarios. Recommendation algorithms can suggest explanations for each discrepancy.

how, through presentations by Théo Alves Da Costa, Senior

The interface between the AI and the human then becomes

Data Scientist, Ekimetrics UK, and Phil Coombs, Account

important. The results need to be easily visualised and

Director, Rimilia Holdings Ltd. The session was co-chaired

understood by someone other than a data scientist. As with a

by John Peachey, Managing Director - CFO Global Markets,

black box, it’s risky to input data for machine learning with no

HSBC, and David Strong, Digital Practice Director - Cloud

understanding as to what’s inside.

Transformation, Sopra Steria.

AI 2.0

Al these elements combine in order to create a roadmap towards a data science approach in finance functions.

Théo Alves Da Costa outlines the evolution of Artificial

Credit and Collections

Intelligence (AI). It began with rule-based learning: the

Phil Coombs, Rimilia Holdings Ltd, highlights a second example.

programmer writes the rules for the machine to follow. This has

While AI has been applied to order management, customer

progressed to learned rules, where little input is required from

billing and cash applications, credit and collections has

the programmer. The machine is provided with the data and

untapped potential.

extrapolates its own rules.

By analysing the past payment behaviour of clients, cash

That is not to say that the machine stands alone. It still

flow can be better controlled by focusing attentions on late

requires human input. The human feeds the machine with

payments, and reducing aged debt. Potential problems can be

relevant data and then monitors the output. In order to

predicted in advance. The human no longer has to be reactive,

ascertain the relevant inputs, the business first needs to

but can be proactive. This overall streamlining can lead to a

understand where the human adds value. Not everything needs

better distribution of resources, specifically human capital,

to be automated.

where people can move to value-added functions.

AI in finance

who to contact and when, rather than annoying customers

Alves Da Costa explains that, to create a fully understood

unnecessarily. Similarly, by understanding the payment

system, all stakeholders must be consulted. The finance expert

habits of customers, credit can be applied according to past

should explain the accounting rules to know what the AI has

performance. This can lead to more sales with those who are

to solve. The data scientist is required to input this expertise

proven to be prompt payers, rather than restricting their credit

into the algorithm. IT expertise is necessary to connect the data

access leading to transferrals to competitors.

sources and automate the process, before the industrialisation phase, to check feasibility. The finance expert can then monitor

It can directly benefit customer interactions, by specifying

Continuous learning from past experience has never been easier nor more beneficial. I

the output from the algorithms. info

- summer 2019 - 73


New look at Thomas Pink Luxury Club members learned how CEO Christopher Zanardi-Landi is bringing the iconic British shirt brand back to its former glory


uxury Club members were treated

each responsible for one intricate part

to an exclusive tour of Thomas Pink’s

of a shirt’s assembly. The final quality-

new atelier in South London, offering

check is conducted in the manner of

bespoke shirts for men and women.

traditional tailoring, by pinning the shirt

The guided tour and presentation was

up under two spoons for inspection.

led by CEO Christopher Zanardi-Landi,

The light and modern space is

accompanied by Tom Meggle, chair of

a world away from the picture one

the Chamber’s Luxury Club.

might have of an apparel workshop.

Once a ubiquitous discount highstreet



Zanardi-Landi spoke proudly about


the company’s commitment to reward

explained how he and his team are

skilled labour, and is one of few in the

rebranding the shirt-maker as more

trade who offer full-time contracts to

upmarket – where the days of ‘four

their floor staff, rather than the typical

shirts for £100’ are being replaced by

zero hours contract.

finer quality and a higher price point.

Zanardi-Landi took on Pink in 2017,

Founded in 1987, the brand was said

after stints for LVMH brands in Paris,

to be named after 18th-century London

Rome and Asia. It was the challenge

tailor Thomas Pink – though research by Zanardi-Landi’s team was not able to verify the claim. Its first shop in Chelsea became a fashion hotspot, with early clients including Hugh Grant, John F Kennedy Jr. and Elle Macpherson. LVMH purchased 70 percent of the company for roughly £41.6m in 1999 and, after the rapidly expanding brand was caught up in a period of competitive discounting, it is now being brought into alignment with the luxury associations of

Once a ubiquitous discount highstreet shirt brand, Zanardi-Landi explained how he and his team are rebranding the shirt-maker as more upmarket – where the days of ‘four shirts for £100’ are being replaced by finer quality and a higher price point

that he was hungry to take on – the revitalisation of a once iconic British fashion brand, from the ground up. He anticipates that the brand will lose a proportion of its traditional customer-base, but is confident that some will stay with them, even at the higher price point. He also anticipates that the brand will appeal to new consumers from an untapped market of





conscious consumers in the dress shirt

the business. According to Zanardi-Landi the re-brand is top to

space. Their offering is split between business smart, business

bottom: the logo, stores, packaging, labelling and brand imagery

casual and evening wear. It retains its distinct British sensibility,

have all been overhauled.

while acknowledging the changes in the way men and women

The tour included the bespoke shirt-making assembly line, a series of sewing machines, where skilled seamstresses were

74 - info - summer 2019

dress today. I

FORTHCOMING FORUMS & CLUBS By application only


Sept 09.00 -11.00

10 Sept

18.00 - 21.00

10 Sept

08.30 - 10.30


Site visit: Legrand Electric

WOMEN’S BUSINESS CLUB Cocktail at Reed Smith office’s Guest speakers: Mx Pips Bunce, Director, Global Markets Technology Core Engineering – Strategic Programs, Credit Suisse


17 Sept

CONSUMER BR ANDS FORUM Plastics & packaging

08.30 - 10.30




08.30 - 10.30

19 Sept


08.30 - 10.00

Guest speaker: James Robey, Vice President, Global Head of Environmental Sustainability, Capgemini

12 Sept

08.30 - 10.30

RETAIL FORUM Retailers & Digitisation, best friends or opponents? IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ALIBABA CLOUD UK AND KSUBAKA

Venue: Alibaba Cloud UK

Most sessions take place at the French Chamber unless otherwise indicated. For more information, please contact: Ophélie Martinel at: or 0207 092 6634


- summer 2019 - 75


Innovation & sustainability in luxury jewellery Members gathered at Hotel Café Royale to hear how Barrett West, VP and Managing Director of Tiffany & Co., is moving with the times


n 2 May, the Pompadour Ballroom at the famed Hotel Café Royale

offered a grander setting than the norm for breakfast. Corinthian pilasters and mirrored panels with gilded frames surrounded the 60 guests who were treated to delicious pastries and fresh

People want the reassurance of the big brand, but they don’t necessarily want to feel that they are buying the same as everyone else

Consumers also demand sustainable products.





packaging choices made to ‘the voice that we have and the power that we have around that voice to raise awareness of critical issues,’ says West. ‘We believe that we are leading the jewellery industry

juice before settling in to hear from the guest speaker of the event title.

A sustainable voice

in the right direction.’

platform to think about the future.’

Barrett West, Vice President






Over the years, Tiffany & Co. have

– Managing Director, UK & Ireland,



stopped using coral, protected a site in

Tiffany & Co, was introduced by

generations. ‘When I joined Tiffany, 80%

Alaska from mining, and committed to

Florence Gomez, Managing Director of

of our spend was traditional media,’

achieving zero net emissions by 2050.

the French Chamber. Gomez highlighted

says West. ‘Today over 60% of our

The brand has a political voice, placing

the importance of sustainability and the

spend is digital. So, it’s been a complete

adverts urging Mr Trump and the

concept of responsibility for Tiffany &

transformation in 7 years.’

government to stay in the Paris Climate

Co. and their core business practises.




Similarly, this generation requires


Continuing in this vein, West

more personalisation. ‘People want the

The jeweller also has complete

presented on ‘The Pioneering Next

reassurance of the big brand, but they

control over the provenance of its

Generation Luxury Jeweller’.

don’t necessarily want to feel that they

diamonds. They are the only luxury

are buying the same as everyone else,’

jewellers that can state the source of

says West.

each; all processes are kept in house

Innovating then and now Tiffany & Co. has a long history,

A new Tiffany store addresses this

after purchase of the rough diamond.

established in 1837. ‘We created [the



The importance of sustainability to

Tiffany engagement ring] in 1886 and

importance of its location, in the cool,

the brand was highlighted early on to

we haven’t changed it since,’ says West.

fresh, dynamic environment of Covent

West. ‘When the CEO of the company

‘Today, it looks as fresh and as modern


is asking you about your thoughts on

as it did then, and I think that’s a very



sustainability in your interview, that tells

good example of the vision and foresight

engraving and embossing services which

you something about the company,’ he

of the company.’

can be personalised by inputting designs

says I SL

Despite this, West says ‘we should not dwell on the past but use it as a 76 - info - summer 2019



into ipads.


store vending







Mitigating credit risk with AI At this evening cocktail sponsored by Aurexia, participants learnt about the potential of AI in finance and for credit risk management


he business value of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in banking will

that this maturity is linked to the company’s ability to process

reach $300bn by 2030, according to a 2019 report by tech

structured (standardised) and unstructured (no pre-defined

information provider, IHS Markit. With companies clamouring for

format) data. The finance sector is already well advanced in the

an ever smaller slice of the pie as its use becomes widespread,

collation of structured data but unstructured data still faces

the implementation of AI must be astute.

cultural and regulatory restrictions.

At the Sofitel Hotel, 35 participants from across the

Originally, AI was used to solve repetitive activities through

financial sector gathered to hear the differing perspectives and

the use of robotics. This has since evolved to include an element

approaches of speakers: Pierre Cabannes, Head of Finance

of anticipation: mitigating risk with strong calculation power and

& Insurance Sector, Sinequa; Ulf Clerwall, Senior Manager,

predictive algorithms. This improves the information outputted.

Aurexia; and Gauthier Rousselet, Credit Risk Management,

It is therefore not difficult to present a strong business case,

Credit Agricole CIB, with discussions expertly moderated by

as managers are well aware of the opportunities and the costs

Janos Barberis, Head of Entrepreneurship, CFTE.

involved. They are also aware of the threats raised by taking no action; they understand how their competitors may take

Tech and finance

advantage of the tech.

Janos Barberis, Head of Entrepreneurship, explains that the Financial Crisis of 2008 created a divergence in the way that

The human behind the machine

technology was applied and used. Technology aimed to drive

Ulf Clerwall, Senior Manager at Aurexia, highlights the

efficiencies in Western countries but to reform financial markets

importance of the human in developing, implementing and

in Asia. Now these opposing elements are converging.

monitoring any AI programme in business.

The focus falls on being digital first as the time to reach

Research has shown that 120 analysts collate data based

critical mass grows shorter. For traditional banks, it took nearly

around credit risk for 3 out of 5 working days, leaving only 2 days

100 years to create economies of scale. For financial tech

to analyse said data. AI can therefore address this time deficit,

companies, there is now only a 5 year cycle.

overcoming limitations to a human’s processing capabilities.

The business case for AI

edict ‘Garbage in, garbage out’ – the quality of the output

Barberis reflects that, with AI, public understanding of the

from AI analysis depends on the quality of the data inputted.

technology is based around its limited functionality from when

The human is necessary to teach the machine the language of

it was launched in the mainstream, rather than how it has

finance and the dialect of credit risk. They can also recognise the

advanced since. There is a lack of maturity in mindset which

nuances of how to teach the AI to adapt to individual institutions

needs to be overcome in order to create value.

and their cultures I

But the human must still be involved. Clerwall states the

Gauthier Rousselet, Credit Risk Management, argues

Sinequa’s solution for cognizant AI Big data isn’t helpful on its own, but information is important. Humans have the ability to work manually to interpret data, finding the meaning and transforming this to information. But this solution cannot scale. AI can help to grow this by packaging 3 elements: • Collecting and connecting data • Understanding the business value of the data • Filtering data to recognise patterns and trends which can then the sent to a presentation layer in a clear and concise format

Source: Pierre Cabannes, Head of Finance & Insurance Sector, Sinequa info

- summer 2019 - 77


A treat for the senses


n a peaceful corner of the famed RHS Chelsea Flower Show

nestles Jardin Blanc. More than a restaurant, the show’s

official hospitality partner offers a treat for the senses. The live music and a live cooking station, interspersed amongst spectacular floral displays and sculptures, created an immersive experience for the guests. Accompanied by thematic botanical cocktails, forty Patron representatives of the Chamber networked in the presence of Raymond Blanc OBE himself. Alongside the exclusive space in the Jardin Blanc, guests enjoyed a relaxed evening of exploration amidst the various and exquisitely designed gardens weaving through the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. The second edition of this exclusive Patron event even saw the sunshine make an appearance. Serendipitous for an outdoor themed evening. The Chamber would like to thank Raymond and his team for their warm welcome. I SL


Seasonality and sustainability


beautiful 15th century manor nestled amongst meticulously manicured gardens in the heart of Oxfordshire welcomed

fifty French Chamber members for the latest edition of the Diner des Chefs. The Chef of the title was Raymond Blanc OBE, at the 2 Michelin-starred Belmond le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons. This long-standing partnership has endured for a reason. The ambience, menu and welcome of Chef Blanc combine to leave a lasting impression on attendees, many of whom return

year on year. The evening opened with a caviar tasting kindly provided by Petrossian, as is traditional for this annual gathering. This led to the main event: the 5-course meal envisaged by Blanc. The fresh Spring produce used reflected Blanc’s commitment to sourcing seasonally and sustainably, a topic on which he spoke with passion on the evening. Opening with Le Pistou, a garden vegetable soup with fresh basil, this was followed by L’Agnolotti or Goat cheese agnolotti, with tomato essence. The main course: L’Agneau, with Dorset Lamb, Jersey royals, and garden vegetables. Each dish was accompanied by a complementary red or white wine, kindly provided by Château Olivier. A selection of French and British cheese was then enjoyed before the dessert of La Fraise, ‘A theme on strawberry’. Guests enjoyed the final moments in these tranquil and elegant surroundings participating in a Q&A session with Blanc, before heading back to the buzz of the City. Thank you to Raymond and his team for their long-term support of this anticipated event. I SL

78 - info - summer 2019



Armour and sculptures


enry Moore was a cultural pioneer, with works symbolising post-war modernism particularly

through the sculptural format. The ‘Henry Moore: The Helmet Heads’ exhibition is the first to explore the great twentieth-century British sculptor’s fascination with armour. Eric Ellul, Senior Partner at BCG and Trustee of the

Wallace Collection, gave an introductory speech to start proceedings. Fifteen Patron members of the Chamber were then not only treated to an exclusive viewing of the pieces on display, but were led by Toby Capwell, cocurator of the exhibition. Capwell presented the collection, detailing the history of and inspiration behind the sculptures, drawings, maquettes and sketches. This included the role of the armour and helmets held at the Wallace Collection, displayed alongside the sculptures, in influencing his ideas and creations. Following the tour, Patron members gathered in the covered courtyard to enjoy a breakfast and networking session, all before the start of the work day. No chinks in the armour of this particular event. The French Chamber would like to thank The Wallace Collection for welcoming members to their renowned cultural space for this exclusive morning event. I SL


Bankside views and a live performance


wenty-five Patron members came together at the Southbank

quality of the sound and the acoustics cannot be matched

Centre for an evening concert based around a selection of

unless attending a live performance.

French Classics, played by the inimitable London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Guests then experienced this first-hand, with a programme including Debussy Iberia from Images, Saint-Saëns Piano Concert

The evening started with a cocktail reception, with beautiful

No.5 (Egyptian), Ravel Mother Goose Suite, and Debussy La Mer,

views on the Thames, the London Eye and the Festival Pier.

conducted by Edward Gardner. Pianist Stephen Hough was the

During the reception and prior to the concert, Timothy Walker

star of the show, wowing the audience with his elaborate and

AM, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Orchestra,

passionate performance.

greeted the guests and gave a short speech. He commented on the digitalisation of music, enabling classical music to reach a wide audience, particularly younger

Overall, a rarefied combination of eminent musicians and illustrious compositions. The Chamber extends its thanks to the LPO for their performance and welcome. I SL

people. However, he believes people are missing out as the


- summer 2019 - 79




French furniture fun

Prime location with a prime namesake


t the heart of the Clerkenwell design cluster, EOL Group’s showroom is well located to display its office furniture

collections. The relaxed and modern space filled with stylish furnishings greeted guests attending the latest Rendez-vous chez event on 16 April. For the modern office, the design of the workspace can be essential to the wellbeing and engagement of employees. EOL’s collections provide a visually appealing yet practical solution to this business conundrum. With products made in France, the event provided a platform to present their heritage, style and high-quality materials. Participants tested the furniture throughout the evening, whether seated in the lounge areas or standing at the heightadjustable desks. An informal and friendly atmosphere reigned; the important role of furnishings and design in creating an amenable workplace ambience in action. I


he Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill styles itself, as its


Military precision in timepiece design


name suggests, after the appreciation for craftsmanship

and British tailoring of wartime Prime Minister and oft-cited greatest Briton of all time, Winston Churchill. However, it balances this traditional slant with modern touches for a streamlined customer experience.

n the prestigious passageway of the Burlington Arcade

Fifteen PAs from amongst the Chamber’s member base

nestles Bell & Ross, a watchmaking boutique which offers an

gathered to experience these elements for themselves. From

experience to its customers rather than a simple transaction.

the food and drink, to a tour of the bedrooms and meeting

Twenty-five Chamber members discovered the intimate

rooms, they sampled all the hotel has to offer. One lucky PA

space in an evening of networking amongst the latest watch

won a £50 voucher to use at the hotel’s Montagu Kitchen and

collections. Ladurée delicacies accompanied the discussions

all left equipped with ideas for a corporate venue.

and featured in goody bags, handed to participants at the end of the evening.

Thanks to the Hyatt Regency London – the Churchill for their warm welcome. I

For a final treat, attendees were privy to an exclusive preview of a future collection, months before public release. Inspired by the history of aviation, each of the brand’s timepieces meets specifications of military precision, originally envisaged through a collaboration between watch designers and aeronautical control panel specialists. The end of the event came quickly but time flies when you’re having fun. An appropriate sentiment amongst these flight inspired timepieces. I


Mandeville at Marylebone


n 6th June, twenty-five members of the Chamber gathered for the month’s Rendez-Vous Chez… at The

Mandeville Hotel. Located just off the main thoroughfare in Marylebone, it adroitly balances its busy central London location with boutique hotel qualities. For business travellers, and for the odd Chamber gathering, the hotel is located only a short distance from the bustling Marylebone station. The perfect setting for a spot of afterwork networking. Participants enjoyed canapés, and the summery FrancoBritish combination of Champagne and Pimms, as well as private tours of the hotel. The lucky winner of the prize draw will also have the chance to return to partake in an afternoon tea in the associated restaurant. I

80 - info - summer 2019


10 July

18.30 - 21.00

SUMMER CHAMPAGNE RECEPTION At Serpentine Galleries, Kensington Gardens, London W2 3XA £50+VAT per person, £80+VAT special price for two - Open to all members


Champagne partner


Join us at The Serpentine Gallery and its elegant surroundings in Hyde Park to welcome the summer in London. This is the perfect opportunity to network with up to 200 participants from a wide range of sectors while sipping prestigious Champagne and enjoying delicious treats. For further information, contact Leïla Hafez at: or 020 7092 6644

19 Sept

18.00 - 20.30

MEMBER 2 MEMBER COCKTAIL & EXHIBITION At The French Residence, 11 Kensington Palace Gardens, Kensington, London W8 4QP Early bird: £30+VAT individual ticket, £50+VAT special price for two Open to all members


Join us for our largest Cocktail & Exhibition of the year: 18 exhibitors and 170 participants in 2018! With the chance to book a stand space, this is a unique opportunity to present your products and services to the French Chamber’s network. Or choose to attend and discover more about your fellow members! This is the 20 th edition of this much loved event. For further information, contact Suzanne Lycett at: or 020 7092 6651

30 Sept

PRIVATE TOUR OF THE PRIVATE COLLECTION At The Wallace Collection, Hertford House, Manchester Square, London W1U 3BN Open to Patron Member Main Representatives. By invitation only


18.30 - 20.30

The exhibition will be led by Dr Xavier Bray, Director of the Wallace Collection. Among the Collection’s treasures are an outstanding array of eighteenth-century French art, many important seventeenth and nineteenth-century paintings, medieval and Renaissance works of art and one of the finest collections of princely arms and armour in Britain For further information, contact Lauriane Véron at: or 020 7092 6670


- summer 2019 - 81

3 Oct

08.00 - 10.00

SEMINAR WITH EDF ENERGY At Sofitel St James, 6 Waterloo Pl, St. James's, London SW1Y 4AN Free of charge Open to all members More information coming soon… For further information, contact Leïla Hafez at: or 020 7092 6644

8 Oct

19.00 - 23.00

ANNUAL GALA DINNER At The Landmark London, 222 Marylebone Road, London NW1 6JQ Individual: £190+VAT, Table of 10: £1,800+VAT, Table of 12: £2,090+VAT Open to all members

Ga a ANNUALGAL ADINNER2019 Guest of honour: John Allan CBE, President of the CBI, Chairman of Tesco plc Attended by over 400 senior executives of the Franco-British business community, our Annual Gala Dinner is the French Chamber’s flagship event. It features: • A champagne reception • A gourmet dinner with fine French wines • Live entertainment • A silent auction in aid of Humanity & Inclusion, whose mission is to help disabled and vulnerable people to help meet their basic needs, improve their living conditions and promote respect for their dignity and fundamental rights • And other surprises... For further information, contact Leïla Hafez at: or 020 7092 6644 For sponsorship opportunities, contact Lauriane Véron at: or 020 7092 6670 Gold sponsor

82 - info - summer 2019

Silver sponsors

Charity partner

Champagne partner

Patron Members of the French Chamber in Great Britain

Celebrity doesn’t always sell A positive review on social media is almost twice as influential as celebrity endorsement


Positive reviews read on social media


Inspired to purchase from social media


Offers/promotion shared by others


Endorsement from an influencer/celebrity

What else is important to shoppers in 2019? Check out the results of our Global Consumer Insights Survey

Source: Global Consumer Insights Survey 2019

This content is for general information purposes only, and should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional advisors. Š 2019 PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. All rights reserved. PwC refers to the UK member firm, and may sometimes refer to the PwC network. Each member firm is a separate legal entity. Please see for further details. 190604-094147-CH-OS

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