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French leather industry: A meeting on support mechanisms for entrepreneurship

French leather industry: A meeting on support mechanisms for entrepreneurship

The National Leather Council (CNC ) held its 12th Leather Encounters in digital format on 18 March. On this occasion, the CNC presented the support mechanisms for the creation of companies in the French Leather Industry, including Au-Delà du Cuir (ADC), the incubator for brands in the industry, and the “Faire de lance” project, a platform for connecting brands and manufacturers in the leather goods and footwear sectors. ADC also took advantage of the event to inaugurate its 150m2 showroom in Paris, in the heart of the 2nd arrondissement, at 64 Cléry street.


During this 12th edition of the Rencontres du Cuir, the CNC made a point of reminding us of the priority of its commitment to young companies and designers. Despite the pandemic, the French Leather Industry wishes to remind that it remains a job-creating industry, particularly through the ADC and the Faire de Lance project.



A real support for the companies of the leather sector and its new entrants


The CNC’s commitment to the players in the leather industry is illustrated by the dynamisation of existing companies as well as real support for young entrepreneurs thanks to a number of innovative measures.


For example, in order to encourage the creation of new companies, the sector has provided support by contributing to a guarantee fund created within the IFCIC (Institute for the Financing of Cinema and Cultural Industries). It also participated in the setting up of the Cuir Invest investment fund which supports promising young companies by providing them with equity capital.


The Council did not forget to mention its intention to encourage the transfer of VSEs/SMEs, especially the smallest companies, in order to secure the value chain. In this approach, the CNC, with the FFC and CTC, wished to extend their support to a greater number of entrepreneurs with the development of the ADC device, the only business incubator in the sector.


Moreover, the figures perfectly illustrate the influence of the leather industry on its members: indeed, since its creation in 2012, ADC has benefited from an investment of 5.6 million euros, of which 1.2 million were paid out in the form of subsidies to its winners, and 3 million invested in both individual and collective support. This financial support has enabled ADC to support 79 VSEs to date, 60 of which are still active. 


In 2020, these 60 companies represented a cumulative turnover of 37 million euros and created 195 direct jobs and 89 induced jobs in France, and 74 in Europe. 


With the aim of federating the various players in the vast leather ecosystem, the sector has created a meeting place at 64 rue de Cléry in Paris and inaugurated it last Thursday during the meeting.



ADC, the incubator for the leather industry


ADC was created in 2012 by the Conseil National du Cuir and theFrench Footwear Federation, with the support of CTC (the Professional Committee for Economic Development Leather, Footwear, Leather Goods, Gloves). Each year, a jury of experts selects ten or so winners to follow a programme that gives them access to tailor-made group and individual workshops. 


These winners then have access to significant financial support as well as the opportunity to expand their network, not to mention the 150 m2 of showroom space available at 64 rue de Cléry to exhibit their creations.


The main objectives of ADC and the CNC are to promote French know-how and creativity while remaining in line with the industry’s CSR commitments, as Sophie VIOT COSTER, Managing Director of ADC, pointed out.


The incubator supports companies with original creations, made from environmentally friendly materials and enhanced by the quality of French or European manufacturing.


But the incubator does not limit its support to its prize-winners, it offers its support to all entrepreneurs who are members of the federations of the French Leather Industry through seminars on the specific themes of business creation in leather, footwear and leather goods.

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Faire de Lance, the platform that facilitates exchanges between manufacturers and designers


Created in 2019 by Jean-Pierre TOLO, President of the French Federation of Leather Goods, Faire de Lance is a platform for bringing together project owners and manufacturers, the aim of which is to propose solutions to the difficulties that professionals in the sector regularly face. 


These difficulties include: the need to find new customers, industrialists to ensure the sustainability of their activities and know-how, access to production tools adapted to the activities for new entrants, as well as access to a technical structure for the latter in the leather goods sector.


The platform will therefore help to federate the players in the sector by supporting designers in their projects and by offering young brands the benefit of a network of partners and suppliers. It will also act as a guide for new entrants, providing them with a network for manufacturing prototypes, samples and mini-series.


This ambitious platform intends to make “made in France” accessible to young professionals, but also to give manufacturers the opportunity to reach new customers to ensure the sustainability of jobs. Faire de Lance is therefore actively participating in the creation of jobs in the medium and high-end leather goods sector, while supporting the development of a young, creative and committed entrepreneurial sector.


“Despite an unprecedented health crisis, we are optimistic about the possibilities of job creation in our French Leather Industry. Awareness has been raised about some of the excesses of the fashion industry. The desire to consume quality products, made locally and with environmentally friendly materials is more evident than ever. The actors in our industry are responding to a growing need for traceability and eco-responsibility. The CNC is proud to participate in the defence of leather, this noble material of quality which is part of an eco-circularity approach”, declared Frank BOEHLY, President of the National Leather Council.




Featured Photo : © ADC

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