Rocher senior died at the age of 79 on December 26 following a stroke. He established the business in 1958, creating worldwide distribution for his botanical-based formulations that currently has a turnover of €2bn and employs 15,000 people worldwide.
Tributes to Rocher senior were led by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who referred to him as a ‘great French industrialist’, and his funeral was attended by 5,000 people.
Bris Rocher takes the helm
Bris Rocher, 31, will step up from his position of vice-president, pledging to maintain the values of the group that his grandfather spent over 50 years developing.
The business was established in Gacilly, in the North West of France, and was built around the formulation of botanical extracts, creating one of the world’s first mainstream producers of natural-based cosmetic products.
Rocher senior started the business by selling an ointment based on the locally-grown celadine flower, selling it through mail order.
Retirement was short-lived
The business flourished and Yves Rocher retired in 1992, handing over the business to his son Didier in 1992. However, he went back to running the business when his son died in 1994 and eventually made Bris Rocher vice-president in 2007.
Yves Rocher is a household name in France, underlined by the fact that a TNS Sofres survey carried out in 2007 revealed that one in three French nationals had at some point used Yves Rocher products.
The company also has a strong worldwide presence and is present in 88 countries, represented by brands such as Daniel Jouvance, Pierre Ricaud and Petit Bateau, together with the Yves Rocher brand.