The job description was demanding. The State had defined, in July, the profile of the future boss of EDF, after the announcement of the early departure of its chairman and CEO, Jean-Bernard Lévy. “Someone who masters the major industrial programs”had sketched in broad strokes the Minister of Economy and Finance, Bruno Le Maire, and who owns the “sense of compromise” to reform the electricity giant from top to bottom, without alienating the unions or the European Commission.
After long weeks of research, the Head of State, Emmanuel Macron, has decided: Luc Rémont, 53, will soon be appointed head of EDF. “The President of the Republic plans, on the proposal of the Prime Minister, to appoint Luc Rémont”, “as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Electricité de France”indicated the presidency on Thursday 29 September, specifying that Parliament will have to give its approval to this appointment.
Mr. Rémont’s choice is altogether classic. Until now in charge of part of the international activities of Schneider Electric, this polytechnician, a graduate of the National School of Advanced Techniques, has divided his career between senior civil service and the private sector. The itinerary of the new boss is first of all that of a child of the Lyon bourgeoisie. Son of a psychiatrist and an engineer for a long time mayor (UDF, then UMP) of Saint-Cyr-au-Mont-d’Or (Rhône), a chic suburb of Lyon, this father of four children is married to a normalienne , Director of Expertise at Bpifrance and author in 1998 of a study on… the dismantling of nuclear power plants.
“Very structured and very loyal”
Mr. Rémont began his career at the General Directorate of Armaments (DGA), from 1993 to 1996, and continued it at the Treasury, before serving all the ministers of economy and finance, between 2002 and 2007, in the cabinets of Francis Mer, Nicolas Sarkozy, Hervé Gaymard and Thierry Breton. As the state wanted, the man does not have the profile of the political boss. “But Luc Rémont knows perfectly well how public decisions are made, and that’s very useful for an EDF boss”nuance a former close adviser to Mr. Sarkozy, who remembers a collaborator “very structured and very loyal”, in whom he had “absolute confidence”.
A colleague in Mr. Mer’s office, now a director at Medef, adds: “He followed the portfolio of the state shareholder. I never saw him get upset, even when there were complicated files, with Brussels in particular. » And hot issues followed one another during his “Bercy years”: rescue of Alstom, privatization of motorways and the Société Nationale Maritime Corse-Méditerranée, hasty marriage of Gaz de France with Suez to counter the attack on the Italian Enel , endless negotiations with the unions on the opening of the energy market…
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