The family cosmetics group Rocher changes governance

Bushy beard and closed face, Bris Rocher settles in this meeting room of the headquarters, in Issy-les-Moulineaux (Hauts-de-Seine), of the Rocher cosmetics group, owner in particular of Yves Rocher, Petit Bateau, Arbonne, Sabon (2.4 billion in turnover, 16,300 employees in 114 countries in 2021). The 44-year-old leader is wary of the press and, like his company, cultivates discretion. But Monday, June 12, for The worldhe is doing violence to defend the announcement of the day.

President and CEO of the company since 2009, Bris Rocher wants “dissociate” functions for “further professionalize governance”. At 1er July, he will only assume the presidency of the board of directors in order to“to have the perspective necessary to better respond to long-term environmental, economic and social challenges”.

The general management will be managed by Jean-David Schwartz. Bris Rocher is in a hurry to dub its “binomial”A “twenty-year collaborator” who started within the group, in the United States in 2002, before leaving it in 2011 to return four years later at the head of the American entity Arbonne, then Yves Rocher.

Reassure employees

This handover is not insignificant for this family business, 97% owned by the descendants of the founder, Yves Rocher. His grandson, Bris, anticipates fears and wants to reassure “teams” particularly in Brittany, the cradle of the company created in 1959, where 3,000 employees produce the majority of cosmetic products. Especially since the company has been experiencing difficulties since the crisis due to Covid-19. In January, the group announced the elimination of 300 jobs and the closure of a factory in Ploërmel (Morbihan).

Read also: Yves Rocher plans to cut 300 jobs in Brittany over three years

Bris Rocher relativizes: “We have suffered a substantial loss of turnover, but the group remains profitable and retains the confidence of its banking partners. The Ploërmel factory worked on perfumes. From now on, we are focusing on skincare and developing anhydrous cosmetics [sans eau]. I therefore anticipate the major changes needed to become leader plant-based and responsible cosmetics. »

Possible restructuring

The change in governance raises questions about a possible restructuring. The hypothesis of an opening of the capital draws a nervous laugh from Bris Rocher. He scrapped fifteen years to rebuild the Rocher empire by repatriating the shares held by Sanofi within the family. “Today, we are able to develop on our own. My mission is to pass the group on to the next generation to preserve its values ​​and identity,” he insists.

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