The sun of Europe waves the assets of the market in the service of “Made in France”

“Europazon, made in Europe at the best price”, “Let’s stop illegal imports”, “Participate in the relocation of companies” † The slogans waving with this news “eco-responsible and supportive market” opening in June sets the tone. “Our goal is to only offer products made in France, made in Europe or refurbished”said Xavier Mahieu, CEO of Brazeco, a Bordeaux-based company that sells firewood online, and president of Europazon. Behind this name, which voluntarily takes the opposite image of Amazon, hides a SAS officially founded in early 2022 by nine partners, all from Soulac-sur-Mer, in the Médoc. They combine different skills – business management, real estate, accounting expertise, mass distribution, etc. – but above all have the desire to act together to move the lines of e-commerce and put the tools at the service of the made in France.

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Mobilizing Crowdfunding

With an initial capital of 100,000 euros through equity and bank loans, Europazon wants to quickly give itself more resources by raising up to 10 million euros in various installments. But there is no question of looking for fresh money from investment funds or business angels, the partners want to mobilize the leverage of crowdfunding. “In our view, this is an important element. We do not want shareholders who pressure us on profitability, but individual members who can ultimately own up to 90% of the capital of the company”, says Xavier Mahieu. An initial opening of 10% of the capital will take place in the spring. If the model is not currently that of a cooperative society, it could soon become one.

In any case, the challenge is huge in the face of competition from e-commerce giants that are already well established and have an unrivaled catalog. If Europazon promises a million references as soon as it goes online in June, Cdiscount, the French leader, shows more than ten times more, while the ogre Amazon offers more than 350 million products for sale on its marketplace and claims to have sold 11,500 products per minute. in the United States alone from Black Friday to Christmas 2021.

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Build on Octopia’s supplier feed

Europazon’s logic is right to break with this consumption that is as bulimic as it is globalized. But to get there again, it will be necessary to attract enough sellers as well as buyers, to create a vicious circle. A trap where several Amazon local initiatives launched during the Covid crashed.

Recognizing this critical issue, Xavier Mahieu and his partners have decided to take up the arms of the competition by leveraging the marketplace solution offered by Octopia, the subsidiary of Cdiscount founded last year. “Octopia is essential because it will bring us a stream of very large sellers from day one, enabling us to showcase these million references. It also provides, through the fulfillment solution, to manage the logistics of warehousing and ‘shipping of products’, argues Xavier Mahieu. Objective: To provide a customer experience at the competitive level. “And it is a standardized tool known to sellers who can therefore very easily connect to Europazon to quickly increase the number of references offered”, adds the leader; who is also actively looking for interested sellers

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Attractive commission levels

In concrete terms, a seller of refurbished phones will be able to register both on Back Market and on Europazon, and a French or European SME can simultaneously sell on Europazon, Amazon or Cdiscount. To bring home the point, Europazon offers free registration, no subscription, and a lower commission than the competition, especially for refurbished products. “We want to be competitive for both sellers and buyers, but without falling into a low cost, as it is imperative for us to maintain the financial means to play elbows to familiarize ourselves with advertising and a marketing campaign”, says the leader. He also says he is convinced that consumers will play the game of manufactured in France and Europe and renovated in the current geopolitical and climatic context.

For example, partnerships are envisaged with players in the social and solidarity economy, refurbished and second-hand goods such as the Emmaüs network, the Envie network or even the online thrift store Patatam. And Europazon is already considering variants of its platform in neighboring countries, especially in Spain.

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