Corporate | 24 June 2016

A Renault reality: social business

Renault’ social business programme, Renault Mobiliz, has been running since 2012, with the purpose of developing transport solutions for persons in situations of social exclusion. Social business entrepreneurs and Renault employees interested in this worthy cause met last week at the Mobiliz Lab event, a series of workshops offering first-hand insights into what social business actually means in practice. Let’s take a closer look at this new cooperative approach to social business.
by Caroline De Beaumont

What’s the Renault take on social business?

Renault promotes social business by supporting the development of transport solutions for underprivileged sectors of the population, through its network of Renault Socially Responsible Garages, and  through the Mobiliz Invest investment company, which helps to finance social business enterprises. In the last four years, Mobiliz Invest has invested in seven companies running socially responsible transport services.


What exactly was the Mobiliz Lab event ?

On 3 June, Renault staged a highly original event —Mobiliz Lab— to offer employees direct insights into what social business means in practice, within the Mobiliz community. Employees would meet up with the entrepreneurs through a series of cooperative workshops at which these businesspeople would present their projects and explain the sorts of problem they were addressing. Renault people at the event would find out about the challenges being tackled, and put forward ideas for new solutions, and possible contacts. This is another important angle to the principle of cooperation.


So how did it go?

Some quotes from the social business entrepreneurs :

Renault has brought The Good Drive a highly valuable perception of practicalities, markets, and the kinds of people who’ll be needing new tools for training up to the driving test. We’re talking about underprivileged sectors of the population, who increasingly tend to be shut out of the mainstream system. Mobiliz has provided us with precious awareness and a wealth of practical solutions here.

Jean Menu, CEO of The Good Drive, which develops an innovative digital learning system that puts the driving test within easier reach.


We’re more intelligent together than on our own. A lot of great ideas were thrown up in very short space of time: ideas we probably wouldn’t have had otherwise. For The Good Drive in particular, discussions point the way to further breakthroughs that will doubtless prove instrumental for successful release of this innovative system in the future.

Eric Lemonnier, Renault Tech chief and mentor of The Good Drive.

Mobiliz Lab was an excellent instance of collective intelligence at work, and that’s hugely satisfying. Sure, the people who attended the event are Renault people, but they’re citizens first and foremost. They were enthusiastic and inquisitive. And they came up with some great ideas, many of which will be taking root and growing to generate real value for Totem.

Emmanuelle Champaud, chairman of Totem Mobi, which runs a Twizy car-share service, partially financed by advertising, addressing people in difficulty and underprivileged neighbourhoods, where lack of transport can be serious problem.


Some quotes from the Renault employees involved :

The event format was lively and rewarding. Idea input was brisk and productive. And we’re eager to get started on them.

Florent Troubat, head of the Renault CSR project.

Social responsibility at work! Highly satisfying and motivating: this kind of initiative lends fresh meaning to people’s everyday work.

Frederic Luzi, Renault vehicle interior expert.


My motivation is to uphold employee savings, through financial investments that generate both meaning and value. Through Mobiliz Invest and our employee savings programme we’re actively furthering the values of social responsibility, seen in job creation and measures to counter poverty and social exclusion. That’s obviously a source of great satisfaction and fulfilment for us.

Benoît Ostertag, employee representative and head of the FCPE Renault Mobiliz Solidaire supervisory board.


Speaking with people after the event it was very apparent that they’d appreciated this initiative. They’ll definitely be talking about it. They found it meaningful, and that’s the message they’ll be getting across.

Benoît Ostertag, employee representative and head of the FCPE Renault Mobiliz Solidaire supervisory board.

The employees who attended our workshop brought in fresh ideas that we probably wouldn’t have come up with ourselves, on offerings, contacts, possible tie-ins with Renault in-house teams, and contact with Renault customers. This kind of co-construction approach is really quite impressive.

Sandrine Franchini-Guichard, delegate-general of Fédération Pionnières, which promotes women’s entrepreneurship, long-term job creation, and innovation in its broadest sense (technologies, usages, management, social responsibility.


Discover the Renault Mobiliz Lab meeting in vidéo.



what are the Businesses backed by Mobiliz invest ?

Here are some examples:
• Wimoov develops platforms that help people in difficulty obtain access to transport on a long-term and self-reliant basis.
• MOPeasy runs an electric vehicle car-share service addressing social housing neighbourhoods and rural localities.
• ADIE offers a microcredit service enabling people shunned by conventional banks to obtain a loan for purchasing a vehicle, and thereby access employment opportunities.

Mobiliz also partners Ticket for Change and Fédération les Pionnières, which share Renault’s commitment on developing an entrepreneurial spirit capable of creating both economic and social value.

And to learn more about the companies and partners backed by Mobiliz Invest :


AND How does Renault finance social business ?

Renault has endowed Renault Mobiliz Invest SAS with a capital of €5 million. And Renault employees can volunteer to invest part of their saving in the Renault Mobiliz Solidaire fund (managed by Ecofi Investissements), under the company’s employee saving schemes. As well as boosting the financial resources available for the social business projects that Mobiliz Invest helps to finance, this also lends meaning to the concept of employee savings.


To contact us or to submit a project, email us at :