Le Point: How did the idea for your club come about and why did you devote it to the cultural sector?

When you arrive at your place and discover this beautiful private mansion and its garden, where 30-somethings in jeans and sneakers work, you have the impression of finding yourself in a sort of 21st century Interallié circle. That was the plan: a club for millennials?

Not really a “club” in the strict sense of the term, because we want to be open to the world and anyone can come to us, invited by a member, or organize a conference, an event without necessarily being. If I had to mention a model, it would rather be Anglo-Saxon. I wanted something like the Hospital Club, founded in London in 2004 by Paul Allen and Dave Stewart (respectively co-creator of Microsoft and ex-musician of the group Eurythmics, editor’s note). I dreamed of a place that also had something to do with the San Francisco club The Battery, which unites hundreds of Silicon Valley start-up leaders around climate issues and corporate social responsibility.

We are, I believe, very different. Our place is very business and especially open during the day…

Who’s coming to your house?

Our audience is quite diverse. Our members work for music labels, TV channels, movie studios. They are in communication, audiovisual or fashion and more broadly passionate creative decision-makers. These are people who would not meet elsewhere and who, thanks to the intermingling that takes place here, can envisage amazing partnerships.

An example ?

A video game production company that meets, through us, the management of a major Parisian museum. I was told that today they are working on a very promising project…

Finally, you are a matchmaker, your job is the same as the matchmakers of yesteryear?

Yes, we create short circuits between decision-makers and talents. We are allows all cultural actors in our country to meet and talk to each other. The very meaning of our project is to break down silos, blast verticals and help boost creativity. In France, our society is too compartmentalised. The talents who join us have a lot to share. Their skills can be expressed across many sectors.

What is your small business business model?

It’s pretty classic. Like any club, each member must pay an annual fee (around 1,500 euros, Ed). 40% of our turnover is generated by the events we organize and by the rental of spaces. 20% comes from our hospitality business: our restaurant, bar and caterers. The rest is generated by our TV program production activity, for the M6 ​​group, in particular but also music.

Isn’t creating an old-fashioned meeting place in the age of the metaverse counter-intuitive?

The experience of confinement that we have lived through has shown us that all-digital is not a panacea. The virtual world like social networks denies humanity. A human needs to see, to touch, to look, to feel… A real encounter must necessarily be physical – it is valid in all types of relationship: romantic, friendly or professional.

Which sectors are most represented in your business? And conversely, which cultural sectors have not yet joined you?

Traditional audiovisual and media professionals understood very early on the usefulness of our club. The world of consulting and communication is very well represented there. We have many representatives from the worlds of tech and digital, fashion and luxury. We have a lot of leading technology players because of our shareholding (the round table includes several business angels with a strong presence in the Net-economy, editor’s note) and partnerships with VivaTech, for example. It remains to seduce the publishing sector. I am convinced that book professionals would have much to learn from the exchanges they could establish with us.

We have a rich program. On Monday evenings, we organize “talks” with personalities. Tuesdays are cinema encounters. On Wednesdays, we alternate piano-bar and comedy-club. On Thursdays, labels hold showcases. On weekends, it’s quieter. We seek to highlight, every day, young talents. This is the whole purpose of one of our programs called “We are young leaders” and which allows young and old to pitch their project in front of investors. We are committed to presenting our partners with personalities who will create the unicorns of tomorrow. I tell myself that if We are existed earlier, Netflix might be French! I would add that we place particular emphasis on supporting women who have a business project, in particular with the creation of specific meeting formats such as “Bright

Speaking of which, is there gender parity in your business?

We are close. Our members are still predominantly male. But the male to female ratio is 60/40, which is much better than in many other circles.

You were talking about helping start-ups emerge. How do you contribute to it?

We organize two types of events that are dedicated to this mission. The first is called “We are challenges” within the framework of VivaTech. It aims to find and reward talented entrepreneurs. Ten days ago, we rewarded three start-ups, selected from 165 applications received, which will become a member of We are and benefit, with the help of Bpifrance, from structural support for their development. The second is called “We are French Touch” and, as its name suggests, it is entirely dedicated to thinking together about the impact of new French technologies: it is the first totally cross-functional event that honors everything this ecosystem! Created with the “French Touch” movement, it will take place on November 23 in various places, in Paris and in the Provinces.

To hear you speak, one would swear that your mission is to help give birth to the “start-up nation” described by the Élysée! Are you supported by public power?

We have no ties to the state although we work closely together. We are a strictly private project and if we settled in the 8th arrondissement of the capital, it is not to be close to the Presidency of the Republic, but more simply to be next to the decision-makers of our industries. We rely heavily on the idea of ​​reciprocal generosity between our members. Our members have things to share: it can be experience, expertise, know-how. The goal we are pursuing by welcoming all these talents is to allow them to mutually enrich each other and to enhance our French genius. And so much the better if it benefits the country.

*More information on the “We are” website.