The Board of Directors of BENETEAU SA met on April 25 to prepare for the changes to the Group’s governance following the General Meeting on June 17.
The terms of office for the positions of Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer, which the Company combined in 2019 to entrust them to Jérôme de Metz, are scheduled to expire at this General Meeting. After three years of combining these roles in a context marked by significant adversity (health crisis, unprecedented supply chain pressures, cyberattack, etc.), exceptionally intense work and major successes, particularly with the rollout of the new strategic plan, the first results of which can already be seen, Jérôme de Metz, 63, indicated that he would like to retire and not be reappointed. At this time, all of the Board members sincerely thanked him for the work accomplished and the results achieved with the Group’s united and motivated teams.
His departure will coincide with Jean-Paul Chapeleau, current Deputy CEO, Industrial Operations and Development, reaching the age limit set by the bylaws, and he has agreed to continue working with the Group as an Advisor to the Executive Leadership Team.
In line with the Company’s succession plan, the Board therefore invited Bruno Thivoyon and Gianguido Girotti to continue moving forward with the Group’s strategic plan, which they have drawn up and implemented alongside Jérôme de Metz: Bruno Thivoyon as Group Chief Executive Officer and Gianguido Girotti as Group Deputy CEO and Chief Executive Officer of the Boat Division.
Bruno Thivoyon, 47, is currently Deputy CEO - Finance, Legal and IT Systems. Gianguido Girotti, 44, is Deputy CEO - Brand and Product Strategy, Boat Division.
Jérôme de Metz: “It has been a great honor to have led the Group. I would like to thank the shareholders and the Board, who have placed their trust in me, as well as our teams, who I have grown deeply attached to, and our many partners from across Groupe Beneteau’s ecosystem. Together, we can feel a certain satisfaction at having drawn up and implemented the Let’s Go Beyond! plan, in addition to managing various major operational challenges that have been concentrated over a short period of time. Our results can clearly be seen, and 2022, despite the complex international situation and the continued supply chain crisis, will be an even better year than 2021. I am very pleased to be able to hand over to Bruno Thivoyon and Gianguido Girotti. They have already been involved in driving the Group’s recent transformation, they get on together perfectly, and they will be able to take the Group forward to build on its success”.
The appointment of this Executive Leadership Team, combining youth and experience, will be accompanied by a return to a structure with separate positions for the Chairman and the Chief Executive Officer, in line with the approach applied by the Group until 2019.
The Chairman of the Board will be Yves Lyon-Caen, a director of the Group, which he chaired from 2005 to 2019. Louis-Claude Roux will continue as Vice-Chairman of the Board.
The Board also decided to invite the General Meeting to appoint Ms Marie-Hélène Dick as a director, replacing Jérôme de Metz. Ms Dick is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Virbac and will join the Board as an independent director.
“I am honored to be joining Groupe Beneteau’s Board of Directors. I hope to be able to contribute to the development of this outstanding group, which has continued to be family-owned, in the boat sector, which I particularly appreciate, with a view to ensuring its sustainable success over the coming years”, declared Marie Hélène Dick.
From June 17, 2022, Bruno Thivoyon will be Groupe Beneteau’s Chief Executive Officer. Bruno joined Groupe Beneteau in January 2020 as Group Chief Financial Officer. Bruno Thivoyon began his career in 1998 with Valeo, after graduating in both industrial systems engineering and from IAE management school. Over 22 years, he held several finance positions, at its headquarters then in various business units.
From June 17, 2022, Gianguido Girotti will be Chief Executive Officer of Groupe Beneteau’s Boat Division. Gianguido drew up and rolled out the House of Brands strategy (first pillar of the Let’s Go Beyond! plan), making it possible to reposition the brands and product offering, while developing the distribution strategies. A naval architecture graduate from the University of Southampton (UK), Gianguido Girotti joined the BENETEAU brand in May 2015.
From June 17, 2022, Yves Lyon-Caen will be the Chairman of the Board of Directors. Yves Lyon-Caen, who has a law degree and graduated from Sciences Po and Ecole Nationale d’Administration, worked for the French Ministry of Economy and Finance, then served as Chief of Staff for Prime Minister Michel Rocard, before moving to the banking sector as Chairman and CEO of Crédit National. At the end of 2000, he joined Groupe Beneteau as General Manager of the investment holding company BERI 21, then served as Chairman of the Supervisory Board from 2005 to 2019. From 2014 to 2022, he chaired the French Nautical Industries Federation (FIN).
From June 17, 2022, Marie-Hélène Dick-Madelpuech will join the Board as an independent director. A veterinary doctor, Marie Hélène Dick-Madelpuech joined Institut Pasteur in 1989, then after completing her MBA at HEC, she moved to the pharmaceutical firm Ardeval. In 1992, after her father passed away, she decided with her family to take over the family business Virbac, which he had founded 20 years earlier. Virbac has been listed on the stock market since 1985 and is the world’s sixth largest pharmaceutical group focused on animal health. Marie Hélène Dick has chaired its Board of Directors for the past 20 years. She is also Chairwoman of Panpharma, a pharmaceutical laboratory that she took over with her husband and is specialized in essential medicines for hospitals.