By integrating the Périgord firm François Tourisme Consultants, the Protourisme ecosystem pursues a strategy of specialties and expertise: The health crisis we are going through has underlined the validity of this imbalance in the world of tourism.
François Tourisme Consultants (FTC), a Périgord company specializing in sustainable tourism (with the Ecorismo and Biorismo brands attached to it) has discreetly moved into the sphere of influence of Protourisme. The Savignac School is the link between Philippe François, first director of this reference school in tourism management, and Didier Arino, a first-class graduate. The 30-year-old bond has never been broken and finds an even stronger bond in this transmission of activity.
THE PARTNERSHIP ACCORDING TO DIDIER ARINO
The contract was signed in July 2020, in a Covid context “which has shaken our sector of activity without changing a line in our agreement: nothing has been renegotiated, it is a common adventure”, emphasizes Didier Arino. And Philippe François remains a speaker for the structure. “I like to respect history and identity, which was also the case when I started at Protourisme: I followed in the footsteps of the three founders before I left my personal mark. When I took over the MLV Conseil, which would not be what it is without its creator and the way the teams work, I also respected its history and its units. The same goes for the FTC. We need to respond to the needs of French tourism, which is becoming increasingly virtuous, and each of these entities is contributing to this because of its history. This does not rule out being realistic: Protourisme had attacked MLV frontally, its only competitor on camping and leisure bases, to take market share from it. In the consulting profession, this is not a capital-intensive performance, competencies must be included. »
The legal system integrates the FTC through shareholding mechanisms involving the entire Protourisme network into a skills aggregation logic.
“We were two Neo-Aquitaine. Together we are becoming one of the main operators of engineering and tourism development in France”, sums up Philippe François.
Many complementarities called for this approach, from audit practice to training, with Qualiopi approval received simultaneously.
The FTC, which has completed more than 7,000 missions and published around twenty thematic guides, brings a dimension of sustainable development to this sector: Protourisme takes on the values that the company Périgord has worked on over time. And his image. “We were never content to answer a question,” continues Didier Arino. “We have always avoided artificial tourism and have integrated responsible development. But we did not have the tools, the labels, the CSR, the support approaches, which is a real know-how from the FTC, with priority in the issues of compensation, mobility, valorisation of agrotourism and local productions. We need to strengthen these skills to go even further. »
With François Tourisme Consultants (FTC), Protourisme adds a brand that matters in the world of tourism
Go ahead … in an area that Didier Arino had decided to invest anyway. With the FTC, Protourisme adds a brand that counts in the world of tourism, where “we are artisans, we make tailor-made: but our voice carries, we are influencers”.
One and a half years later, the entire FTC team is still there and has grown even stronger. The protourisme ecosystem, which consists of staff in the structures and correspondingly independent consultants abroad, represents a network of around forty employees. “When a partnership makes it possible to develop, it is a winner. This favors the motivation of the teams, a renewal, a contribution … This model is stronger than an integrated group, with a single head, a method. »
Protourisme is currently working for Flying Whales
In the short term, development stops there. In the longer term, the manager must engage in consulting professions that attract less, a high level of customer requirements, but more limited budgets. “We no longer have the pleasant architecture as a team working with a research director who sells 25% less than in 1985, when the subject has become more complex. »
Arrived at the end of 1994 to Protourisme, the one who runs the business today, was involved in cases that were light years away from the expertise currently required. The development model is based on external growth, and Didier Arino will therefore look for other competencies to add to the many he already has. With a fairly accurate idea of possible complements, “it can be in the culture, in the financial construction of the tourism sector … This strategy is based only on the skills of the women and men who could join us”. He likes to take as an example the refocusing run by Hémisphère Sud, a PR agency run by Corinne Hennequin, on its niche of excellence: the world of wine and the art of living. In tourism, it is the same, we must focus our efforts where we can differentiate ourselves: What would the sector lack if we did not exist? To me, this is the definition of a brand, ”assures the co-author of the first book on tourist brands.
RESPONSIBLE TOURISM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT
Protourisme applies to itself what it implements for its customers, the pressure to their limits to raise the level of requirements. “During the health crisis, we spent a lot of time giving them advice and support. Some have come out of old materials we have written and realized that we foresaw the vision and behavior change we are experiencing today. In 2010, we spoke for La Grande Motte about year-round tourism, proximity, increased quality, customer experience, the environment … This crisis brought the sector back to our values, our ways of working, the co-construction, responsibility. Thus, in our strategy for the Arcachon Basin, we have succeeded for the first time in getting all elected representatives to agree. And not on the lowest common denominator. Protourisme is currently working for Flying Whales (airships and solar panels) with Bordeaux Métropole Aménagement, at the request of the region.
Another textbook case, the economic and social impact assessment for Club Med, in Les Arcs, on the consequences of an investment for the department, the region … The FTC-Protourisme merger makes it possible to offer, with a duration in advance, operational solutions to issues , which promotes margins, while integrating data as treatment of seasonal workers or pollution. “I’m in favor of tourism development, but no longer anywhere, anyway,” sums up Philippe François. “I was a disciple of Émile Biasini during the inter-ministerial mission for the development of the Aquitaine coast: unlike the Languedoc coast, where we concretized, we had a riparian development strategy in the Atlantic with micro-stations every 20 km. The political vision of development and hotel operations are also a responsible approach. “
The weight of the tourism sector was imposed on everyone during the health crisis, “France discovered that it supported agriculture, viticulture, fishing … what we had been saying for years”, continues Didier Arino. , “these underlying trends are reflected in our recommendations: it is diversity that makes our territories attractive.” And he expects to see this issue appear in the presidential election programs.
I subscribe to the long term: I am an impatient patient