Founded in 1968 in Carros close to Nice by veterinarian Pierre-Richard Dick, Virbac is dedicated exclusively to animal health. With a turnover of €695 million in 2012, the company ranks today as the 8th largest animal health company worldwide. Its wide range of vaccines and medicines are used in the prevention and treatment of the main pathologies for both companion and food-producing animals.
Interview with Doctor of veterinary medicine Thierry Hazan
Dr. Thierry Hazan is a veterinary surgeon. He is also a friend who follows all Jean-Pierre's adventures with passion - and admiration.
How do you see Jean-Pierre's challenges?
“I discovered sailing with him and I have sailed several times by his side. I went to the base in Lorient and then for a short trip on board Virbac-Paprec. After seeing the equipment and particularly the team JP has brought together, I realized the extent of his challenges. I was very impressed, even though I am not surprised by his professionalism.”
How do you explain that the profession of veterinary surgeon can be found among his projects?
“Already because in a very strong way, he managed to associate Virbac, a symbolic name in the profession, with the world of sailing. We can all see just how successful he is and success always unites. Moreover, I believe that veterinary surgeons are pluridisciplinary and endowed with a rich extra-medical culture. They are naturally capable of seeing themselves in these very large projects creating many sporting, technical and human skills.
At the end of 1994, Paprec was a small business in Courneuve with a turnover of €M 4, specializing in the collection, sorting and recycling of used paper.
Paprec Group, the leading independent recycling business in France
Its Managing Director, Jean-Luc PETITHUGUENIN, sets and holds its course. In 7 years, Paprec Group became the leading recycling business in France. This was 7 years of uninterrupted and sustained growth, a turnover of over €M 600 in 2011, 5,000,000 tons of treated and recycled waste, successful diversification (paper, paperboard, plastics, wood, construction site waste, electric and electronic component scrap, selective household waste collection, etc.) and 3,500 workers working in over 80 sites, all quality certified, throughout France and Switzerland.
Interview with Jean-Luc Petithuguenin, Founder and Managing Director of Paprec Group
In your opinion, what are the common values revealed by sailing and business?
JLPH: Although these two worlds are different, a skipper and a businessman share the common values of getting involved in projects, as well as exceeding and surpassing themselves in this respect. Success can only be achieved through the quality of the men and, more particularly, the courage, tenacity and intelligence they show daily. Of course, you must be capable of managing teams and projects, and encouraging individual and group work to reach set goals, while respecting man and the environment, which is one of our major concerns. At the same time, innovation is synonymous with development and differentiation. Great racers like great businessmen have innovated and succeeded.
What unites Virbac-Paprec Sailing Team, Paprec Group, Virbac and the other partners of this Vendée Globe project?
JLPH: Paprec and Virbac are two independent companies, predominantly controlled by a family which asserts the desire to tackle large groups, and “multinational monsters”. Our expansion and our success, as well as our respective reputations show that it is perfectly possible for such organizations to succeed, thanks to their capacity to innovate, their actions and responsiveness and their continued focus on customer satisfaction. Paprec and Virbac have been able to expand, while remaining loyal to their core values and convictions. They are now perfectly illustrated by this partnership, in which we share our costs, values and images, as well as a respect for man and his natural environment.
Does innovation involve taking risks?
JLPH: Yes, innovation does indeed involve risk-taking. Too often, we associate innovation with the invention of a new product of which nobody has yet thought of. Today, it is defined more by the concrete and direct improvement of a product or existing process. Without innovation, my group would never have increased its turnover by 125 in 7 years, or the number of employees by 60 over the same period.