CEO – I-Deal Development
Since finishing his studies in engineering, Frédéric Bonan has been passionate about advising and developing companies. His spheres of action: strategic vision, the enhancement of human resources and international development.
After graduating from the École Nationale Supérieure de Mécanique et d’Aéronautique, Frédéric Bonan joined the 2MI industrial marketing consultancy firm before studying for a Master’s degree in Marketing and Management at the ESSEC. On completing this training, he joined the Altran Group again, where his career progressed over the following 15 years.
His progression and that of the Altran group then followed a parallel course. A business engineer at first, he became Marketing and Development Manager before undertaking the role of Managing Director of the company and becoming a member of the executive board. Under his leadership, the Group went from 3,800 members of staff to 18,000 and experienced a turnover growth from 290 M€ to 1,400 M€ in six years. Frédéric Bonan also concentrated on establishing Altran beyond the borders, all over the European continent and also in the United States and Asia.
Frédéric Bonan was also involved in turning around the consultancy firm Arthur D. Little, ensuring a turnover of 160 M EUR and an operating result of more than 10 %. In parallel, in India and Asia, he created a network dedicated to outsourcing and BPO and analysed the conditions for business success on the Asian continent.
The consultancy firm I-Deal Development was born in 2005, the fruit of his reflection and experience. Through this, Frédéric Bonan is able to put his cross-cultural talents at the disposal of SMEs, offering advice on operational strategy and capital transactions.
Frédéric Bonan supports company leaders, boards of directors, investors, shareholders and SMEs in particular (in fields such as aeronautics, mechanics, high tech, luxury, design practices, services, consultancy, SSII etc.) with the aim of surpassing their growth thresholds.
Among the many examples of I-Deal Development’s success are the Laboratoires Oligosanté which have multiplied their share value by seven in three years and the GMS Group, which has seen its turnover multiply threefold.
In his career path at Altran, as in his current role as CEO of I-Deal Development, Frédéric Bonan has set up an innovative management structure where personal development is a central theme. Identifying collaborators with great potential, activating key motivators, promoting progression through new salary systems and also transmitting knowledge and supporting continuous training are, according to him, the basic elements for the success of any company.
Furthermore, as a highly committed individual, Frédéric Bonan gives part of his time to the protection of historical monuments.
4 questions for Frédéric Bonan
Creating value and development: the role of strategic consultancy firms
The notion of advice is now just a cliché. How about strategic consultancy firms? When do they get involved in companies? Can they really deliver added value to the company? Here is some food for thought.
What is a typical consultancy firm like?
It’s difficult to define what a consultancy firm is or isn’t in several words. Any situation can exist, from the little team specialising in a specific economic sector to the large general firms regularly quoted in the media, and these can have their advantages according to the various companies and the challenges they are facing. Through mapping, it would be possible to differentiate between specialist firms such as I-Deal Development whose focus is oriented towards operating and financial transactions and mainstream firms which can serve any type of company and guide them in marketing as well as in potential capitalisations.
When should you call in a consultancy firm?
Here again, the firm can represent real added value at different times in the life of the company. It can either offer daily support in its long-term development strategy or intervene during a key stage, for example a fundraising campaign for a start-up or the completion of a financial transaction. Each challenge the manager and/or the company faces can justify calling in a consultancy firm: preparing the transfer of the company, breaking through growth thresholds, studying the opportunity for an acquisition or merger, for instance. An essential pre-requisite is that the decision-maker who calls in the consultancy firm is really determined to make progress.
Why should you call in a consultancy firm?
Whether it’s a question of a one-off situation or the definition of a basic strategy, the reflection and implementation of solutions require time, skill, a network and a variety of expertise. A business leader who is entirely dedicated to managing his or her business generally has neither the time nor the specialist teams necessary for achieving these complementary tasks.
The consultancy firm provides an outside perspective, new proposals which would not necessarily come from within the company and the comprehensive know-how for carrying out the identified action in the best way. Legal and financial skills and also networks are therefore called on at the right time to optimise the company’s decisions. I would say that, globally, one of the major advantages relative to calling in a strategic consultancy firm resides in instant access to a very high level of expertise from outside the company.
What are the challenges in the consultancy profession?
As I like to remind people, the difficulty in strategic consultancy is having a realistic approach to the client. It is essential to understand all the driving forces behind the operational management team in each concrete case. Consultancy is therefore a twofold activity: maintaining proximity in order to be as close to the company and its leadership as possible and distancing oneself in order to have an overview of the issues, in space and time. The challenge is allowing the transformation of theory into a real, measurable gain for the clients. It is also essential for a consultancy firm to know how to present things objectively and frankly in order to support the company’s ambition, while at the same time ensuring its security and success. It’s a subtle balance!