Pierre-Edouard Stérin

Founder, President

After graduating from Paris-Sorbonne University and EMLYON Business School, Pierre-Edouard began his finance career in 1998 at Société Générale and Exane. After working there as a sales manager and analyst, he followed his entrepreneurial passion to launch his first venture: BlackOrange. The online software sales and video game company posted €3 million revenue in its first fiscal year before it was sold in 2001.

Next, he focused on a gift box concept that he discovered in Belgium. The adventure began in 2003 as a franchisee named Smartbox. After delivering very high growth during the first years of operations, Smartbox acquired his franchisor with the support of financial sponsors. Nowadays, Smartbox is the leading player in its industry, operating in 11 countries and posting business volumes of €500m. Setting his sights on other ventures, Pierre-Edouard handed over the leadership to a new operating team in 2013. He currently holds the title as chairman and majority shareholder.

Aside from his Smartbox venture, Pierre-Edouard invested in several startups, the most notable of which being LaFourchette, a restaurant-booking platform. He supported the company from 2009 to 2014, as it grew into a €15 million revenue company in France, Spain and Switzerland. LaFourchette was sold to TripAdvisor in 2014 for $150m and the transaction was unanimously acclaimed as one of the most successful cash exits that occurred in France by that time.

A tenacious entrepreneur and philanthropist, Pierre-Edouard has poured his ambition and optimism into every project to better support his charitable endeavours. Pierre-Edouard currently resides in Belgium, where he oversees, as its President, Otium Capital as an investment vehicle pursuing investment opportunities in line with his ambition.

François Durvye

François joined Otium Capital in early 2022 as CEO. He manages the investment teams and drives the strategy of Otium Capital.

François brings 15 years of experience in the energy industry and in strategy consulting. He first worked with the oilfield services major Schlumberger where he served in line management roles and as group Chief Economist. He then joined the BCG in Paris as Principal working for the energy and in the private investors and private equity practice. Lastly, he worked for Hager as Group Director of Strategy and M&A.

François graduated from Ecole Polytechnique and is an Engineer of the Corps des Mines.

Mélodie de Pimodan
Growth & LBO Investments

Mélodie started working for Otium Capital in early 2017 and acted as Managing Director between 2019 and early 2022. She now leads the Growth & Buyout investment strategy and acts as Board member of Smartbox Group and of Otium Capital.

She has spent the past eight years working in investment funds in France, holding roles as director at Capza and more recently director at Vendis Capital. Mélodie has sound experience in LBO and mezzanine transactions with specific expertise in the food, consumer goods and health industries. Mélodie has previously worked in M&A for DC Advisory and Societe Generale (Paris and London) and in Leveraged Finance for Merrill Lynch.

She graduated from Solvay Brussels School.

Jérémie Bordier
Venture Investments

Jérémie is a serial entrepreneur with a strong background in tech and acts as Otium Capital's advisor for venture investments since 2019. Having launched successful products reaching worldwide audiences both on B2B and B2C markets, Jérémie has a great understanding of early stage strategies to take a business from 0 to 1. Jérémie started his career at Exalead where he ended up in the strategic committee (acq. by Dassault Systèmes for 130m$ in 2011).

Jérémie has specific expertise in the Gaming, E-commerce, Online Marketing and Hospitality industries.

Jérémie graduated from EPITECH in Paris.

Charles Briand
Growth & LBO Investments

Charles Briand joined Otium Capital as principal in 2017.

Charles previously worked at Weinberg Capital Partners as an Associate on the LBO team. He started his career at Eight Advisory as an analyst within the transaction services department.

Charles is a graduate of EMLYON business school.

Aurélie Bessière
US Investments

Aurélie Bessière joined Otium Capital as a venture partner in January 2021.

She is based in New York, USA. She leads investments in the consumer, retail and entertainment fields in the US. Previously, she co-founded and scaled a beverage brand in the US (DTC, hospitality and retail), and made the brand one of the top 5 nationwide. She had previously worked at Total for 5 years, in business development first, then in Investor Relations.She started her career learning sales at Xerox, audit at PwC and marketing at L’Oreal.

She holds a Master's Degree from ESCP Europe (France) and Aston Business School (UK).

François Gamblin
Finance & Operations

François joined Otium Capital end of 2021 and is in charge of Finance and Operations.

François started his career at Mazars in audit and had gained an operational and financial experience in Europe, North America and Asia within Faurecia (a global leader in the Automotive Industry).

François brings an extensive 22 years track record in Private Equity including Fund of Funds , Funds and brokerage on the secondary market.

François graduated from HEC-Executive MBA and holds a Master from Dauphine University.

Yann-Henri Grynfogel

Yann-Henri GRYNFOGEL joined Otium Capital in November 2018 as part-time CFO.

Yann-Henri is an experienced CFO, very business oriented. In 2018, he founded Peregryne, a consulting firm providing financial support and HR services.He held strategic positions both in groups like Publicis and Fiat, and in fast-growing companies under LBO.

Yann-Henri is graduated from EMLYON business school.

Nathalie Sozansky
Accounting & Administrative Officer

Nathalie worked within the Transport and Logistics sector for ten years occupying various support functions. Nathalie also has an experience of twenty years in start-ups, small independent structures or French subsidiaries of international groups in various business sectors where she was involved in the creation, structuring, takeover, reorganization or upgrading of administrative, HR, accounting and financial functions.

Nathalie has a diploma in “Organisation et Méthodes Administratives".

Jérémy Letovsky
Co-CEO of Otium Leisure

Jérémy joined Otium in mid-2021 to create Otium Leisure, a leading operator of leisure brands in Europe and in the US. He particularly focuses on operations, development and S&M.

Jeremy benefits from an extensive experience in worldwide retail management over the last 20 years. He has been the active leader of the international growth of Retail groups like Etam and Fast Retailing Group in Europe and in the US. Jeremy has lived in France, USA and Singapore where he opened and run more than 300 retail locations in 35 countries.

Edouard Malnoy
Co-CEO of Otium Leisure

Edouard joined Otium Capital in late 2021 as a Partner. He co-leads Otium Leisure, a leading operator of leisure brands in Europe and the US. He particularly focuses on strategy, finance, and acquisitions.

Edouard brings experience in investment firms. He started his career with RedTree Capital, a French-based real estate private equity fund, where he contributed to various acquisitions including logistics assets, office building, and residential redevelopment. He then worked with Bridgepoint, a leading pan-European private equity fund focused on the upper mid-cap segment.

Edouard graduated from HEC Paris and ENSAE.

Thomas Owadenko
Operating Partner

Thomas Owadenko acts as operating partner for Otium Capital.

Thomas is an entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in the digital space. After working for Deloitte he created a group buying website (Akabi), worked for Pixmania (E-commerce retailers), a video guide for hotels (Trivop) his last venture Octoly became the largest intermediary between brands and micro-influencers on social networks in the beauty space.

Thomas Owadenko graduated with DECF.

Pierre-Louis d'Argenlieu
Entrepreneur & VC

Pierre-Louis Joined Otium in March 2022 to leverage venture capital assets.

Before joining the team, Pierre-Louis first worked for KPMG as a management consultant before joining Cambon Partners contributing to making 20 M&A deals in 5 years. He then launched a SaaS admin tech company called Alex Legal.

Pierre-Louis graduated from ESCP.

Louis-Antoine Roullier
Operating Partner

Louis-Antoine Roullier acts as operating partner for Otium Capital.

Louis-Antoine benefits from extensive experience in majority investments over the last 20 years, holding managing roles with various PE Funds such as 3i, Bridgepoint and E. de Rothschild. Prior to joining Otium, Louis-Antoine served as Executive Chairman of Mediprema Group, the leading French medtech in premature baby care and is also a successful entrepreneur in Education as founding chairman of an alternative school.

Louis-Antoine graduated from Paris-Dauphine in Business Law & Finance.