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Those entrepreneurs who took risks to create their companies...

October 24, 2019

Some Provençal entrepreneurs have had very particular triggers or have decided to leave very comfortable professional situations to start their own company

The Marseille 2019 Entrepreneurs' Fair has just ended, after having been punctuated by a number of conferences, debates and workshops. One of the highlights of this year's edition was undoubtedly the "Change Makers" conference, with testimonies and experiences from "entrepreneurs who are driving change".

This meeting highlighted an essential quality for entrepreneurship: "Boldness! This includes trying an adventure, even if it does not necessarily succeed. The activity of an entrepreneur is to be always there, in combat, to respond to daily challenges. To do this, you must also dare to ask for help, change direction, make mistakes, get up again..." said Philippe Korcia, President of the newly elected Union des entreprises des Bouches-du-Rhône (UPE13).

Farouk Boulbahri, President of the Compagnie Nationale des Commissaires aux Comptes (CNCC) Aix Bastia, agrees: "We are undergoing exciting changes. To face it, if there is no boldness and innovation, it is impossible to move forward. In the region, there is a lot of positive energy. So don't be afraid to start, because successful entrepreneurs are those who take risks! «

Risk-taking after a good start to a career

Several entrepreneurs then spoke about the more or less tumultuous paths that led them to launch their companies. LikeIsabelle Mashola, who co-founded Isahit, the first socially responsible digital task outsourcing platform, after having worked for large groups such as Cisco, Dell and Publicis. " I have an engineering background which has allowed me to learn a lot. Change is a learning process that takes time to mature and I have evolved over the years. I decided to put everything aside and co-found Isahit, because technology can help give work to people who are far from employment. Digital technology is also a lever of independence and autonomy for women", explains the director. explains the director. " To be an entrepreneur, you need to have a very good idea, but the most important thing is its application. There is a different culture of entrepreneurship between the United States and France, where failure is perceived very negatively. You don't need to know how to fall: the priority is to know how to get back up!"she adds.

Christophe Caille, for his part, co-created the Marseille-based company Cap Vert Énergie, which specializes in the production of renewable energies (solar, biogas and hydroelectricity) and employs 150 people. "I had a business manager's know-how that I wanted to share for an environmental cause. I have thus left my very comfortable and well paid position within the Conseil supérieur du notariat, and I have decided to invest my energy to bring out a company with a significant impact. I needed a meaningful activity and I agreed to take a risk to create this company, which proved to be profitable! «

Very different triggers according to the entrepreneurs

Another entrepreneur invited to testify and share his experience: the designer Ora-ïto gave a few offbeat anecdotes. "When I was 19, I was kicked out of my design school after ordering a pizza in an amphitheatre... From then on, I wanted to work with brands but they systematically told me to go to hell. I decided to put on the Internet branded objects that I had drawn in computer-generated images. This goes back to 1998, when the web was in its infancy... But many customers and the press believed that these were the new products of the brands concerned. I was then ordered many items" explains the Marseille designer with a touch of humour. "It was a trigger that allowed me to work with brands like Heineken, Adidas, Nike, Guerlain, Gucci, Dior... I almost collaborated with Louis Vuitton too, but it didn't happen because I said the group made grandmother bags," he says.

Mathilde Le Rouzic, for her part, had a completely different way of getting into entrepreneurship. "I started working at Apple and then at an e-health start-up. I then became pregnant and, when I returned from maternity leave, I told my boss that I wanted to start my own company. I have thus launched three start-ups", explains the "serial entrepreneur". He concluded: "My last challenge was the creation of Hellocare, a platform that develops services that connect doctors and patients. It allows for a more fluid relationship with health professionals. We currently have several tens of thousands of consultations, work with 600 doctors and have the ambition to collaborate with 10% of healthcare professionals and develop abroad," says Mathilde Le Rouzic, who remains more ambitious than ever.

Read the article on La Provence

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