Groupe Voltaire Design : a living heritage company

Groupe Voltaire Design has been supported by the CCI Bayonne Pays Basque and the Pôle Implantations since 2011. Géraldine Gilmas, communications and development manager for this young group, told us their story.

What is your business? Why the Basque Country?

We manufacture made-to-measure riding saddles, and 80% of our sales are in the United States. The creator of the Voltaire Design group, Brice Goguet, is originally from the Basque Country, and our workshop manager has been based here for several years, so the choice of the Basque Country was linked to these connections.

Today, the group’s head office and workshop are in Bassussarry, in premises found through the Bayonne Pays Basque Chamber of Commerce and Industry, but we also have a subsidiary in Tampa, Florida, where our manager leads a team of eight sales people. Three agents are also in charge of our development in Northern Europe. 

What has CCI Bayonne Pays Basque done for you?

A lot of advice and, above all, the right contacts at the right time. We called on the CCI Bayonne Pays Basque to help us recruit employees and apprentices. We were put in touch with other companies to share our experiences, and the CCI Bayonne Pays Basque also guided us in our search for a new accounting firm. 

What are your future plans?

We’re currently preparing to expand our premises and purchase new production tools. We’re working with the Bayonne Pays Basque Chamber of Commerce and Industry on financing arrangements. In terms of employment, in 2010 we started out with three people, and today we have 10 employees in the Pays Basque, including two apprentices.