10 years of a great adventure that has not said its final word
You probably haven’t missed it: Smartclic is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year! While waiting to blow out our candles with you, we invite you to go behind the scenes of the Smartclic adventure with Vincent Daumas, its founder.
When Vincent created Smartclic, he never imagined that he would be selected 10 years later as one of the SMEs supported by Goldman Sachs and ESSEC. However, the dream became reality: Smartclic is now part of the first class of the Goldman Sachs Program, which aims to support the growth of 10,000 French SMEs with high potential. This is a great reward for this young entrepreneur, who has managed to turn life’s difficult moments into a beautiful platform for the future.
Smartclic: a project “to keep busy”
It all began on a hospital bed: Vincent, a young business school graduate, had his whole life ahead and a promising career. Hired at the European headquarters of Hewlett-Packard (HP) in Geneva, he developed the company’s Retail Marketing activities for the Middle East and Africa and was able to satisfy his thirst for international business. But life decided otherwise: a “health problem” led him to be hospitalised when he was only 25 years old. Impossible for this tennis enthusiast, rather hyper-active, to remain without doing anything. From there, he entertains himself in writing business models and looked for an entrepreneurial idea that could keep him busy. When he left the hospital, he decided to leave HP to start his own business: “I moved into an old crêperie that had been renovated as an office, which belonged to my grandfather, in the heart of the village of Saint-Jeannet (06)! Passionate about marketing, I launched Smartclic to assist small and medium-sized businesses with website services and large accounts with the development of print media.”
With the help of his brother Olivier, a self-employed salesman, he approached all the local companies in the first few months of activity: very quickly, the need to support brands in developing their visibility on the ground became obvious. The Smartclic adventure takes shape and develops: “over the years, we have co-created our global offer with our clients. In 5 years, we had more than 1000 clients of all sizes: SMEs, major accounts, franchises… It was exhilarating. I was just 30 years old and I really believed I could change the world with advertising articles! “.
Ten years and two moves later…
That’s all Vincent needed to be able to use all his resources as an entrepreneur to be. Little by little, the small creperie in Saint-Jeannet (06) filled up: “the day I mentioned to a trainee to move into the kitchen because all the other spaces were occupied by employees, I understood that we had to move! “In 2013, Vincent comfortably moved his young team into a villa with a garden, two blocks above the small creperie. Today, the villa has become a coworking space for young local entrepreneurs and Smartclic is now located in a beautiful location in Cagnes-sur-mer (06).
The agency has now 17 employees between France and Switzerland. In other words, the little adventure looks more like a SME these days. Despite a very difficult year in 2020, Vincent is approaching this new decade with all the energy and positivism that defines him: “Thanks to the team’s agility and strength, we have managed to challenge ourselves and overcome the crisis. Today, I am very confident in Smartclic’s potential for the next ten years. Our new online ordering platform Smartshop dedicated to networks and franchises is a tremendous growth lever. And I’m ready to even go further: our strategy will focus both on strengthening our local roots and developing our activities on a larger scale, with customers who share the same values of solidarity, proximity, benevolence and sustainable development.” Smartclic has certainly not said its final word…