Barrière strengthens its governance and shareholder base with 4th generation at the helm

6 min reading time

Published on 31/07/23 - Updated on 01/08/23

Groupe Barrière becomes 100% family-owned, with Joy Desseigne-Barrière and Alexandre Barrière taking the reins and finalizing the acquisition of Fimalac's shares.

Groupe Barrière, a French family business with a century-long history, begins a new chapter with the appointment of Alexandre Barrière and Joy Desseigne-Barrière as Co-Chairmen. The fourth generation to run the company since its creation in 1912 by François André, they mark a significant change in the company's governance. This new leadership also involves the purchase of Fimalac's shares, a move designed to develop and diversify the group while maintaining the core values that have fortified its position for over a century.

"We are aware of the responsibilities that lie ahead, and we are committed to respecting the legacy of the previous three generations. Our goal is to make our 7,000 colleagues even prouder to work for Barrière, a century-old French family business. The decision to buy back Fimalac's shares is part of this approach," said Joy Desseigne-Barrière and Alexandre Barrière.

With the implementation of the new governance, the shareholder dynamic has evolved and all the shares held by Fimalac (40%) in Groupe Barrière since 2011 have been acquired. The entire share capital of Groupe Barrière is now held by Alexandre Barrière and Joy Desseigne-Barrière. In addition, the agreement to buy 10% of Société Fermière du Casino Municipal de Cannes (SFCMC) from Fimalac, approved and announced on June 28, was successfully finalized on July 21. On this occasion, Joy Desseigne-Barrière and Alexandre Barrière warmly thanked Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière (Fimalac) for his unwavering commitment to the Group's growth, his support and the decisive role he has played in enabling the fourth Barrière generation to write the next chapter in their family legacy. The duo also expressed their deep gratitude to Nicolas Sarkozy, who served as a director until 2023, for his unwavering dedication and support to the Barrière family, ensuring stability, success and continuity.

About Alexandre Barrière

Born in 1987, Alexandre Barrière is Chairman of Société de Participation Deauvillaise (SPD), the family holding company that oversees Groupe Lucien Barrière (GLB), whose Board he chairs, and Société Fermière du Casino Municipal de Cannes (SFCMC).

After studying in the United States and obtaining a Bachelor of Business Administration from the American University of Paris and an MBA in Hospitality Management from ESSEC, Alexandre Barrière joined Groupe Barrière. In 2014, he joined the group's development department. In July 2018, he was appointed Director of Transformation, responsible for exploring new growth opportunities to meet the ever-changing expectations of customers. He joins the Management Committee and, in November 2018, takes on the additional role of General Manager, Hotels and Restaurants. In early 2019, he became a member of the GLB and SFCMC boards. In May 2021, he is appointed CEO of a new cross-functional department responsible for strategy and development, while continuing his role in transformation. His key priorities include employee well-being, international expansion and digitalization. Under his leadership, the group is once again focusing on employee well-being and expanding internationally, with the opening of the first Fouquet's hotel in New York and two iconic Fouquet's brasseries at the Louvre Abu Dhabi and in Dubai. To meet growing digital demand, the group is preparing for the growth of online casinos in response to the emergence of "pure players" and evolving regulatory challenges. Barrière has already launched its first online casino on the Swiss market.

About Joy Desseigne-Barrière

Born in 1990, Joy Desseigne-Barrière is Chairman of the Boards of Directors of Société Fermière du Casino Municipal de Cannes (SFCMC) and Société Immobilière et d'Exploitation de l'Hôtel Majestic (SIEHM). 

Joy Desseigne-Barrière holds a master's degree in political science from Université Paris-Dauphine and a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Université Paris-Sorbonne. In 2016, she decided to start her career in London. First joining the Publicis advertising agency, where she worked with tourism players, she then joined the BVA BDRC research and consultancy institute. There, she spent four years working on strategic projects to support major hotel groups in solving their challenges. On October 1, 2020, Joy joined the family-owned group as a project manager in the casino department. Since September 2021, as Director of Data & Customer Knowledge, she has overseen strategic projects linked to customer knowledge, performance monitoring and optimization, particularly with regard to the gaming offering. Convinced that innovation and technological advances are central to the entertainment sector, her aim is to implement more effective tools for the group's employees, enabling better personalization and segmentation of offers and marketing actions.

Grégory Rabuel appointed CEO of Barrière

At the same time, Joy Desseigne-Barrière and Alexandre Barrière have appointed Grégory Rabuel as Chief Executive Officer of Groupe Barrière, with the aim of accelerating the Group's development in all its sectors, diversifying its activities in France and internationally, and strengthening its position as historic market leader.

Grégory Rabuel, formerly CEO of SFR and Altice France, will lead the Group into a new phase of growth, development and diversification of its activities in France and internationally.

Chief Executive Officer of Altice France and SFR until 2022, Grégory Rabuel, 45, has 20 years' experience in the telecoms and media sector, where he made a major contribution to the development and diversification of one of the European leaders in the sector.

He began his career in 2000 with Bouygues Telecom as a key account sales engineer, before joining SFR, where he became regional sales director for businesses. In 2009, he was appointed Sales Director at Numericable, in charge of BtoB and BtoC activities. After the acquisition of SFR in 2014, he was promoted to Managing Director of SFR Distribution, overseeing 1,000 boutiques, telesales and digital activities. Three years later, he joined SFR's Executive Committee as Managing Director of BtoC and BtoB activities, steering the group's sales, marketing, digital, communications and customer relations activities. In 2019, Grégory Rabuel becomes CEO of SFR, which generates sales of 10.7 billion euros, has 25 million customers and employs 13,000 people. In 2021, he was appointed CEO of Altice France (SFR, BFM TV, RMC), expanding his responsibilities to include media activities.

Throughout his career, he has focused on developing the company, growing sales, driving digital and omnichannel transformation, and improving the customer experience.

"With his long experience in developing companies in highly competitive markets, Grégory will lead the Barrière teams in France and around the world along the path of growth and innovation. We are delighted to welcome him to this entrepreneurial adventure. "Joy Desseigne-Barrière and Alexandre Barrière, Co-Chairmen of the Barrière Group

"I'm proud to be joining a century-old, family-owned French group, which, with Joy and Alexandre, is turning a new page in its history. Alongside 7,000 committed and passionate colleagues, I will devote all my energy to creating a new dynamic of growth and development for Barrière. With determination, I will lead the Group towards new perspectives that promise to be exciting and full of challenges, while respecting the values and heritage that are so dear to the family. "Grégory Rabuel, Chief Executive Officer, Barrière Group

Barrière group

The Barrière group was founded in 1912 by François André, then developed by Lucien Barrière, Diane Barrière and Dominique Desseigne. The group offers high-end leisure experiences and includes 32 casinos, 1 gaming club and 19 luxury hotels in unique, internationally renowned destinations. The group also operates over 150 restaurants and bars, including Fouquet's on the Champs-Élysées, in various locations around the world. Barrière hosts some 3,500 shows and events a year, and employs around 7,000 people. Sales for the year ended October 31, 2022 totaled 1.29 billion euros. Barrière is a brand that combines the activities of two separate entities: Groupe Lucien Barrière (GLB) and Société Fermière du Casino Municipal de Cannes (SFCMC).

Groupe Barrière

Groupe Barrière

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