Launching into the frozen market, which is already well occupied by the two flagship brands Picard and Maison Thiriet, was not a foregone conclusion. However, the adventure started by Ecomiam in 2009, with a positioning on 100% French unprocessed raw products – no ready meals in this Breton brand – has won over consumers.
So, daring to go on the stock market in October 2020 was the second leap into the unknown for this regional SME far from the world of tech – which is moreover on the eve of the 2and containment due to Covid-19! “I was a thousand miles from imagining that it would be accessible for us, but we are doubling sales every two years, we had to consolidate equity to support this pace of sustained growth”, explains Daniel Sauvaget, founder and managing director. . Left to raise 10 million euros, he will collect 12.6 million.
In 2021, Ecomiam achieved store sales of €31.6 million, up 38.6%. The network has a total of 63 stores, five of which are owned, the others under affiliate commission contracts, and employs 180 people. Now, just over 21% of the capital is free floating; the Sauvaget family via a holding company owns nearly 59%; the rest is in the hands of investors.
Long term visibility
Ecomiam is one of the stock market listings or IPOs (“initial public offering”) with a successful stock market journey (whose current quotation, between 14 and 15 euros, is above the IPO price, at 11.55 euros). Of the seven IPOs recorded in 2020, the year of the pandemic, not all of them were so lucky – such as Alchimie (Internet) or Munic (IT), whose prices were heavily heckled.
For Ecomiam, the results are positive fifteen months later. “For the same percentage of shares sold, we end up with a fundraising 4 to 5 times greater than what we would have obtained with investment funds,” says Daniel Sauvaget.
The SME has gained visibility with customers, but also with suppliers, commercial property companies, which are essential for finding the best locations. It remains autonomous and independent, still managed by the Sauvaget family. The future of the family business can be considered in the long term. “When you have a capital fund, the question arises every four to five years of a new funding round, not here,” notes the leader.
So, the constraints – the six months of work before being listed, the 90 road shows to make themselves known to investors, the 1.5 million euros invested between advice, communication and the entry process -, Ecomiam has no regrets. The company is targeting 110 million euros in sales in 2025 against 14 million in 2019, and around a hundred stores.