Louis Godron

MANAGING PARTNER

FRANCE

Louis Godron

MANAGING PARTNER

FRANCE

Can you define your job?

Louis

Like gifted children, the companies we support have hidden potential that hasn’t had the opportunity to blossom.

Sometimes, the first impression is not so awesome. But we like to dig further and go beyond it.

The bedrock of success is mutual trust, honesty and respect. If you’ve got that, then with a lot of work and attention, you can write amazing stories.

What is key in success?

Louis

I’ve learnt that you can have the brightest consultants, the most elaborate Excel spreadsheets and the strongest legal agreements, but if you don’t understand that it’s about human dynamics, you’ll spoil your chances for success.

Companies succeed because their teams want them to succeed. And I play a role in that. I have my guts in the game. I encourage initiatives and the flow of energy, favour agility in decision-making and put movement above stability. In short, I make accelerated change possible.

One of the experiences I’m proudest of at Argos is Harlé Bickford, which combined of all the possible complexities of a private equity investment. It started with a crumbling, 180-year-old, family conglomerate. Eight years later, it was one of the fastest growing industrial companies in France. The company continues to thrive, and I’m so happy for that.

What made you join Argos?

Louis

I joined Argos in its first few months, in 1991. Argos was once a startup and the entrepreneurial spirit is part of our DNA.

How would you describe the Argos team?

Louis

It’s been quite a ride since 1991, and beyond the growth of our firm, what makes me really proud is the quality of our team and the feeling that what they do here makes them happy.

We work hard but with a real team spirit (it’s about performance, not competition) and impeccable ethics. From a human and intellectual standpoint, I am fascinated by working with people from so many different backgrounds and nationalities.

And the Argos spirit?

Louis

At Argos, helping each other to grow is deeply rooted in our values; most of the partners started as juniors and have evolved within the firm. Add the focus on deep value creation as opposed to financial engineering, the truly multinational setup, and the human values we have nurtured over the years, and you have a pretty unique place for each team member to grow in and enjoy. And I do enjoy it.

Tell us about your responsibilities.

Louis

I’m always thankful and humbled thinking that large institutions have chosen us to manage all these funds, which derive mostly from the savings of millions of people. That’s a big responsibility for us.

We have another responsibility, since we act as majority shareholders in about 20 businesses with close to 10,000 employees in total. The way we practice private equity at Argos, by focusing on making businesses stronger and therefore more valuable, aligns these two responsibilities and gives them one shared direction.

What motivates you?

Louis

Our world is difficult and sometimes cruel to many people. First and foremost, I do my best not to make it any worse! I then try to put my mind, hands, voice and wallet to work for causes bigger than I am. Helping super-motivated young people build a better future, or bringing innovative technologies to humanitarian causes are things that make sense to me.

A word about yourself.

Louis

I’m a dedicated, last-quartile, long-distance runner and an unlikely bass singer, and without any notion of dignity, I persist in these endeavours. Also, my family are a wellspring of happiness, and every day I say to myself that I’m a lucky man.

If you would like to have a direct discussion with me, feel free to

Companies I Support

GOODS

Revenues €37 M

FRANCE

INDUSTRY

Revenues €379 M

FRANCE

TECH

Revenues €65 M

FRANCE

DEFENSE

Revenues €63 M

FRANCE

Meet my Colleagues

Investment Manager

FRANCE

Analyst

FRANCE

Director

FRANCE

Drop Me a Line!

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