Cécile Duval, Les pépinières de France;

French group of growers to conquer England

Les pépinières de France (Nurseries of France) is a group of 9 French growers of young and finished plants who offer a range of 9 different products. Each nursery has its own specialisation. By means of uniting, the different growers hope to broaden their market possibilities as well as exploring new opportunities in selling abroad. Les pépinières also promotes French production. The English market, due to its closeness as well as its enormous market potential, is the first country to target. Later on, the group hopes to enter other North-European markets.

The group was formed in April last year. At the IPM Essen, we had a chance to talk to one of the initiatiors, Cécile Duval. In the following, Cécile tells us all about the initiative.

The Les pépinières delegation at the IPM. On the left Cécile Duval.

- When was Les pépinières de France launched and what were the main reasons for establishing this cooperation?
Les pépinières de France was launched in April, 2015. It gathers together 9 french nurseries (Scrive, Engandou, Gaurrat, Chatelain, Javoy, l'Orme Monferrat, Guillot Bourne II, Ripaud, André Eve). Each one has its own specialty (in the same order: Lagerstroemia, Magnolia, Japanese Maples, Fruits trees, Climbing plants, Dwarf-Conifers, Specimen trees and multistems, Topiaries, French Roses). The reason for creating this cooperation was to join forces in order to more strongly approach the foreign markets with a full range of attractive products.

- What are the advantages of forming this cooperation, for both growers and buyers?
Advantages for the grower are mainly in the field of sharing resources (logistics, sale forces), in reducing management costs, in enlarging their own export catalogue and in this way, to better sell their production. Being part of a group also guarantees a better visibility on the foreign market thanks to our full range of plants. In regards to the buyers - for our nurseries these mainly consist of wholesalers, advantages range from having a larger choice in high quality plants, to traceability (French products), to having business streamlined by reducing the amount of contact persons for trading. The possibility of ordering a full range of plants in one lorry is also a strong advantage.

- You are focusing on the UK market. Why the UK?
UK plant imports have been growing rapidly over the last few years. Plenty of our plants are also well adapted to the British climate and the British needs in terms of quality and varieties.

The nurseries managers, from left to the right: Laure Delevers, Bruno Picard, Laurent Chatelain, Etienne Roussel, Maxime Malard, Marc Koehler, Antoine Scrive, Benoît Ripaud, Christian Gaurrat.

- Do logistics and sales of the participating nurseries all go through this cooperation?
Good logistics and being able to offer high quality plants to our customers will be the key to the success of Les pépinières. The cooperation indeed takes upon itself all logistics and sales in the field of export. For each nursery this is an opportunity to have one international salesperson handling business with their foreign customers.

- You told me that the cooperation is also looking for innovation. Can you explain what innovation they are looking for and how they do this?
The cooperation itself is one of the first biggest alliances created for plant export in France. It gathers together productions. Innovation also comes from the rare and exclusive plant varieties which fit well with the urban climate.

- What are the plans for the future?
To develop a solid entry strategy for the UK market and expand our sales to different European countries.

For more information:
Les Pépinières de France
Cécile Duval
Nurseries sales representative
Tel: +33 672 942 605
E: sales@lespepinieresdefrance.com

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