Paris, October 7th, 2021
It is with profound sadness that Roche Bobois Group announces the passing of its founder, François Roche, on Wednesday 6 October 2021, at the age of 85. Following his active role in transforming Roche Bobois into a world leader in furniture edition and selective distribution for half a century, Mr. Roche stepped back from operations in 2007 to become Chairman of the Group's Supervisory Board until 2019.
For all of those who met Mr. Roche, he will be remembered as a man of extraordinary talent and personality. Commenting on the passing of Mr. Roche, Guillaume Demulier, Chairman of the Roche Bobois Group Management Board, said: “François Roche was a great leader. A true visionary who anticipated trends and seized opportunities. He was a remarkable analytical thinker, always with a vision for the future. François was a practical and personable man who put family interests first.”
A graduate of HEC, François Roche began his career in 1959 working at the Rue de Lyon family store in Paris' 12th arrondissement. Alongside his brother, Philippe, François was responsible for joining forces with the Chouchan brothers – owners of the “Au Beau Bois” furniture store on Boulevard de Sébastopol located at the heart of Paris. Together, they planned to transform their main competitors into partners for life. In the early 1960s, the two families started to import Scandinavian furniture whose design was at the cutting edge of its time. They adopted the Scandinavian style with a fresh perspective, both in their store furniture and decor accessories. In 1961, their first advertisement in ELLE magazine led to the creation of “Roche and Bobois”, which later became “Roche Bobois”.
All four founders would leave their mark on the Group's development. François Roche had a particularly strong influence on the creative and financial side of the Group and actively contributed to Roche Bobois' international expansion.
For many decades, François' eye for detail and keen aesthetic taste led him to oversee the creative direction of the photographs that would showcase the brand's multiple advertising campaigns.
At Roche Bobois, François did not just inspire creativity. His market vision broke new ground for international expansion. The Group kick-started its development in the French-speaking countries of Belgium, Switzerland, and Canada. In 1974, Roche Bobois expanded its network into Spain and Great Britain before opening its first American store in New York. Many other store openings would soon follow.
These milestones would mark the start of an incredible adventure of worldwide expansion for the brand in more than 50 countries.
Since November 2019, the Supervisory Board has been chaired by Jean-Éric Chouchan, a member of one of the two co-founding families.
Several members of the Roche family currently hold positions within the Group, including Nicolas Roche, Vice Chairman of the Supervisory Board, and Antonin Roche, member of the Management Board.
The shareholders' agreement between the two founding families, the Roche family (37.88% of the share capital and 39.62% of the voting rights) and Chouchan (13.45% of the share capital and 14.3% of the voting rights), remains unchanged, with a shared ambition to ensure the Group's long-term development.
|About ROCHE BOBOIS SA |
ROCHE BOBOIS SA is a French family business founded in 1960. The Group operates in 55 countries and has a network of 339 owned stores and franchises (as of 30 June 2021) marketing its two brands: Roche Bobois, a high-end furniture brand with
a strong international presence, and Cuir Center, positioned in the mid-range market segment with an essentially French customer base. Through its Roche Bobois brand, the Group embodies the French Art de Vivre whose presence can now be felt
on the world stage, with original and bold creations from talented designers (Bruno Moinard, Jean Nouvel, Ora Ito, Sacha Lakic, Christophe Delcourt, Stephen Burks, Kenzo Takada, and Bina Baitel) and partnerships with fashion and haute couture houses. Roche Bobois is also a committed partner in the world of culture and the arts. Including franchises, these two brands posted 2020 revenues of €484.5 million excluding VAT, to which Roche Bobois contributed €392.8 million and Cuir Center €92 million.
ROCHE BOBOIS SA 2020 consolidated revenues came to €266.0 million.
For more information, please visit www.finance-roche-bobois.com