Interview with the President, Stéphane Hugonnet
From a merchant family in the centre of France, Stéphane Hugonnet obtained a degree from the prestigious Paris Ecole Supérieure de Commerce after which he got a job working for the Phillip Morris Group. This job entailed quite a bit of travelling and he often found himself in Agde where he met his future wife whose father owned 15 ha of vineyards. Stéphane then decided to “lay down his hat” in Agde, to start a family and to develop this modest-sized property which he transformed into a sound modern business. In15 years he planted about 100 ha of sustainably-farmed vines, joined the local cooperative wine cellar, the Caves Richemer, and became its President in 2005.
His belief: “cooperatives are great means for group selling with considerable clout, boasting significant financial and human means which a private wine cellar cannot afford, and to be efficient it must be managed like a private business.”
His project: “transform the Caves Richemer into a contemporary vinification unit, a genuine global-beverage industry oriented towards wine-tourism.
His values “having an entrepreneur mind, wanting wine-making techniques to go hand-in-hand with our cultural values, but first and foremost … the love of wine!”