What were the keys to success for your partnership after Ardian invested in Lagarrigue in 2016?
Marie Arnaud‑Battandier: From the beginning, there was a great relationship between our teams. The Lagarrigue management, Alain Montean and Jean‑Pierre Mahé, had big ambitions. They wanted to become the leader in France and to start growing internationally, which we knew we could help them to do. They also had very complementary skills: Alain was a trained prosthetist who had joined the company at 16 and Jean‑Pierre was very entrepreneurial and strategically aware. And for us, it was inspiring to invest in a company whose mission is to improve people’s health and wellbeing and to help them overcome social exclusion and inequality.
Jean‑Pierre Mahé: For us, the key was having a very stable relationship with Ardian, where we dealt with the same three people throughout. This created a lot of trust between us. We wanted to make a big change in our strategy, to follow our dream further, and Ardian never said ʼIt’s too ambitiousʼ. No, they said ʼHow can we help you?ʼ So, together we made 25 acquisitions, became number one in France and bought companies in Belgium, Switzerland, Spain and Canada. Their international experience and network were a godsend for us, and we learned a lot during this period that helped us towards our goal of becoming a globally recognized player in orthopedics.
YEARS’ EXPERIENCE OF DELIVERING NON‑INVASIVE ORTHOPEDIC MEDICAL DEVICES
How did your investment in digitalization help to strengthen the company’s position?
MA‑B: Digitalization is a key theme for Ardian and Lagarrigue had already developed its own software program, Rodin 4D, for taking patients’ measurements and designing prosthetics for them. Rodin was one of the two leading virtual prosthetic design programs and in 2020 we acquired the owner of the other one, Vorum, which was a Canadian company. Today, Lagarrigue is the worldwide leader in virtual design solutions for prosthetics.
J‑PM: We knew that the best way to make Lagarrigue a global brand was to have a very strong business‑to‑business proposition, based on digital technology and innovation. We decided to build our digital division by buying Vorum and now everyone in our industry knows us as an orthotics and prosthetics company focused on patient care and digital technologies.
EMPLOYEES IN SIX COUNTRIES
What steps did you take together to make Lagarrigue a more sustainable business?
J‑PM: During those five years, we came to understand that we were a company with a mission to help people. When we were negotiating the deal with Ardian, we saw that this could allow us to differentiate ourselves and create a new value proposition. Sustainability could make us more successful and help attract talented professionals to work for Lagarrigue.
MA‑B: When we decided to invest, it was partly because of Lagarrigue’s capacity to improve physical and mental health and reduce inequality. After that, we started working at a more detailed level and focusing on the areas that were most relevant for this company. We found ways of reducing its use of plastic and adopted eco‑design principles. We also looked at responsible procurement, reducing waste and improving health and safety practices. We also strengthened governance and provided more training to help retain talented employees.
CLINICS PROVIDING PATIENT CARE