Mr RETTMEYER, while the French government debt, for the 1st time since the Second World War is going to equal its national wealth, France is in a recession, unemployment is increasing and inequalities are growing, the company ALLIMAND, that you are the head of, has just doubled its turnover between 2012 and 2011 (72M€), while keeping the same employment structure… How do you explain this significant increase?

Franck RETTMEYER : In our profession, it’s fairly typical. We manufacture heavy machinery… For our turnover to increase considerably, we only need to take between one and three large orders. However, the turnover is not long term… In 2012, we had a high demand for technical paper machines producing high added value paper. Our technology and references meet this market demand.


Around 85% of ALLIMAND’s turnover is generated abroad… Yet you are a French company, the 6th generation. How, with the Montebourg-Mittal and Depardieu-Ayrault affairs and more recently the Jérôme CAHUZAC trial, do you stand up to your customers with this degraded image of France…?

Franck RETTMEYER : I do every now and then avoid saying that I’m French, which is absurd, especially in Asia where the “HOLLANDE” tax system is incomprehensible.

It’s clear that the positions taken by our Government are not productive for French companies and therefore employment.

3) ALLIMAND’s PERSPECTIVES for 2013 – 2014

In 2012 ALLIMAND continued its international installation strategy with the opening of its new office, APMS, in Spain, and then on the American continent with the installation of a new pilot machine in Albany, New York State.

What are you preparing for the months to come and what new countries are you targeting ?

Franck RETTMEYER : A company covering the whole world must have a base in countries other than its country of origin. Especially as in Asia in 2015, a large market area free of tax is in preparation… We’ll no doubt come back to this subject when the time comes.


In comparison to Germany who, since 2000 and the arrival of Gehrard SCHRÖDER, had undertaken courageous and painful reforms (drop in government spending, increased labour market flexibility, corporate tax reduction, reduction of labour costs…). What motivates intermediate scale enterprise business owners to remain in France today?

Franck RETTMEYER: In France, not all is bad… France will be a part of Europe for a long time yet, at least I hope it will. In every company there is tradition, know-how that is built up over several years. Our education system is renowned for producing high quality engineers and technicians and our engineering universities have good reputations, PAGORA for example which trains excellent engineers and technicians some of whom find jobs abroad. With regards to operators, the professional training isn’t nearly as good. Recruiting good mechanical operators for example will become a problem in the next few years.

However what is distinctly less efficient is the 35 hour working week, complete madness, the restrictive tax system endured by our companies. Our politicians don’t understand the modern world and don’t accept globalisation.

Faced with this situation, France has 5 million unemployed people and has become less and less competitive and so less attractive for investors or job creators.

The recession, the drop in spending power, the drop in consumption, the political instability in France are all making our country grow poorer so yes why not go where there is growth, a market and where entrepreneurship is considered a true value!