The current chief executive of Fnac Darty, Alexandre Bompard has been named the new chairman and chief executive of Carrefour, with the 44-year-old set to replace Georges Plassat in the role this July.
Bompard was born in Saint-Étienne on October 4, 1972. He is married to Charlotte Bompard, the vice president of the Bobigny High Court, and they have three daughters. His father Alain was a former president of the city's famous football team, AS Saint-Étienne, holding this position from 2007 to 2013.
Bompard is a graduate of the Institut d’Etudes Politiques (Institute of Political Studies) in Paris, with a degree in Public Law and a postgraduate degree in Economics, as well as being a graduate of the Ecole Nationale de l’Administration (ENA - National School of Administration) (Cyrano de Bergerac class). As one of the best students in his class, he had the opportunity to work for the Inspection Générale des Finances (IGF), from 1999 to 2003. In 2003, he went on to work for the government, as advisor for the Ministère des Affaires Sociales et du Travail.
He left the government in 2004 to work for French television channel Canal+, working in the office of channel President Bertrand Méheut, before becoming Director of Sport and Public Affairs at the company in 2005. As part of this role, he successfully stemmed the loss of subscribers from the channel, secured an extension to Ligue 1 football rights, and oversaw the acquisition of a competitor, TPS.
From 2008 to 2010, Bompard was president and chief executive of Europe1, a leading radio station. During his tenure, he made some significant changes to the programming schedule, recruiting several French personalities to front programmes. This led to an increase in advertising incomes, and Europe1 reported a record audience in 2010.
In November 2010, he announced his decision to join Fnac, a specialist retailer of books, music and cultural products. He joined the business in early 2011, and immediately set to work implementing a strategy to help the retailer deal with the rising tide of e-commerce, with a programme called 'Fnac 2015'. This would focus on providing better quality services and to wider consumer choice, as well as the creation of new stores.
A few months later, he announced the launching of an e-reader in partnership with the Canadian brand Kobo, a response to the Kindle created by Amazon. Once more, this project was a success; the e-reader reached its sales target in the first two weeks, with 30,000 units sold. Since its launch, the Kobo has sold more than 180,000 units.
Following on from this, in 2013, Bompard led Fnac’s initial public offering, which was followed, in 2015, by the company's greatest achievement to date - the buyout of Darty, an appliance specialist, for €1.1 billion.
His skills are widely recognised by his trade peers - following the buyout of Darty, he was congratulated by some of the most prominent chief executives in French business. He was also presented with a Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Literature), in May of this year.
However, Bompard is not without his critics, with commentators drawing attention to his high wage earnings while at Fnac Darty. In 2015, he earned €11.5 million, while in 2016, this increased to €13.8 million, when performance bonuses are taken into account.
Bearing in mind that Georges Plassat earned €9.7 million last year, ESM wonders whether the remuneration committee at Carrefour, or indeed its shareholders, including Bernard Arnault, Philippe Houzé and Abilio Diniz, will be willing to back the company stumping up the extra cash to keep their new man happy.
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Solene Main. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine. Picture: ActuaLitté/WikimediaCommons