Partners’ Club: An exclusive service for our members

The Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique cluster drives innovation and increases competitiveness. Its network of stakeholders is strengthened with the addition of a Partners’ Club, which is open to businesses seeking to play a role in the blue economy.

Its objective is to boost the maritime economy by fostering relations between the cluster’s Partners and Members.

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Today, Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique prioritises support for businesses as they scale-up the industrial and commercial phases of the outcomes of officially recognised projects. This means mobilising the full range of skills offered by those who have an interest in and are of interest to growing the blue economy.

The Club is therefore open to players who will contribute their particular expertise for the benefit of the cluster’s 350 members, such as banks, investment funds, consultancies and media groups. Membership of Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique is a way of seizing the opportunities offered by the maritime economy. It means taking advantage of the cluster’s drive to innovate represented by the 325 projects which have already been officially recognised and which account for R&D investment of close to €900 M.

Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique offers a range of customised commercial services to meet the specific needs of each Partner in terms of business, communication/advertising and maritime strategic information, for example.

By the end of 2019, 19 key players had joined the cluster’s Partners’ Club:

- 7 banks: Crédit Agricole du Finistère Filière Mer, Crédit Agricole Ille-et-Vilaine Filière Mer, Crédit Maritime Grand Ouest, Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne, Caisse d’Epargne, Société Générale and CIC Ouest
- 2 investment funds: Go Capital and Ace Management
- 2 media groups: Groupe Télégramme and Sipa Ouest France/ Infomer
- 5 consultancies: Wavestone, Sogedev, Vidon Group, GAC Group and Absiskey
- 2 legal firms: Fidal and Cabinet Boulouard
- 1 creative industry player: Ewan Lebourdais, maritime photographer



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A long-standing stakeholder in the maritime banking sector, Credit Maritime Grand Ouest, part of Banque Populaire Grand Ouest, was created on 7 July 2017 from the merger of the following banks – Banque Populaire de l’Ouest, Banque Populaire Atlantique, Crédit Maritime Atlantique and Crédit Maritime Bretagne Normandie.

With a tradition of supporting projects in the sea fishing and aquaculture industries, Crédit Maritime Grand Ouest has extended its activities to the whole maritime industry and littoral economy, making it a legitimate, natural partner for Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique.

In addition to its array of human skills, the bank draws on all the resources and tools at its disposal – such as investment funds and innovation loans – to support the blue economy and respond to the ambitions of the regions of Bretagne, Pays de Loire and Basse Normandie that it serves.



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Identifying ground-breaking projects, harnessing business enterprise and supporting project directors are the aspects of the cluster’s approach which attracted the Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne bank, keen to develop the maritime economy and increase employment through innovation. By helping generate a robust, sustainable maritime industry sector, Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne is actively contributing to the economic vitality and development of the region and is ensuring the long-term viability of jobs in Brittany. The bank is fulfilling its role therefore as a regional banking provider that is there for its customers.

With a network of 226 local branches, Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne has 3 206 frontline and 2 813 administrative staff and more than 1.8 million building society members and customers. It has a presence in all four départements of Brittany and provides services to private individuals, community organisations, companies and maritime and farming sector customers whose turnover does not exceed 10 million euros. Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne is part of the Crédit Mutuel Arkéa group, which was created in 2002 from a federation of the mutual societies of Crédit Mutuel de Bretagne (CMB), Crédit Mutuel Sud-Ouest (CMSO) and Crédit Mutuel Massif Central (CMMC), and which also includes twenty specialist subsidiaries. 


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SIPA-OUEST-France, the newspaper group comprising the daily paper Ouest-France, Infomer (publisher of Le marin, Produits de la Mer, Cultures Marines, Navires et Marine Marchande, Marine et Forces Navales), and the magazines Chasse-mare and Voiles et Voiliers, has worked closely with the Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique cluster ever since its creation.

This print media group is keen to exploit its publications and events – the Assises de l’Economie Maritime, Assises de la Pêche et des Produits de la Mer and Euromaritime – to promote the many innovative projects supported and recognised by the cluster.

Membership of the Partners’ Club not only enables the group to consolidate links with all the cluster’s key players – such as entrepreneurs, researchers and financiers – but also provides it with the opportunity to devote its energies to helping develop the maritime economy in the Brittany and Loire regions.


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It is an astonishing fact that the cliffs and beaches of the Brittany coastline stretch for over 1200 kilometres. Given that the best route to growth and prosperity lies in exploiting the region’s resources and specific characteristics, Crédit Agricole du Finistère felt it should position itself as a leading provider of banking services in traditional markets, with a focus firmly on maritime affairs.

The industries of the blue economy are expanding rapidly. The needs in terms of financing, supporting and creating networks for innovation and making connections are immense. What is more, Finistère has the added impressive advantage of being the centre for more than 40% of French marine-related research.

Crédit Agricole du Finistère has committed to this shift in strategic development and has adopted a three-phased approach:

- To provide detailed analysis of all development opportunities
- To create a customised range of products and services for the maritime sector
- To make elected representatives and industry professionals aware of economic issues relating to the sea.

Such strategic realignment is as ever aimed at identifying and developing drivers of growth for our region and its inhabitants. We have made this our business for over one hundred years.


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Crédit Agricole d’Ille-et-Vilaine is deeply rooted in the region it has served for 110 years. The bank has always maintained a special relationship with blue economy players. It is clear that the sea is a strategic focus for industrial growth, just like agriculture, the food industry, housing and environmental economics, health and prevention, the digital economy and tourism. The bank has identified these as the regional growth drivers on which to concentrate its activities in the years ahead.

There is a strong link between land and sea in terms of providing food, earning a living and offering a welcoming environment. Land and sea are in the bank’s DNA and have been since it was created more than a century ago. Crédit Agricole d’Ille-et-Vilaine has forged close ties with key players in these sectors. This relationship led it to consolidate its organisation and to create a Maritime Economy Hub, where blue economy stakeholders can directly consult for specialist advice and can draw on the collective expertise of the Crédit Agricole group.

This approach is in keeping with the values of a mutual savings bank such as Crédit Agricole d’Ille-et-Vilaine. It has built up its maritime business by working alongside the region’s elected representatives and economic players on a specially created committee – the Commission Littoral. The bank analysed the maritime economy in Ille-et-Vilaine before drawing up a comprehensive overview of the sector, highlighting the opportunities and challenges of the different activities involved. This approach, coupled with the maritime arm of its business, signals the bank’s intention to reach out to the sector’s stakeholders, understand the issues facing them and demonstrate its capacity to help achieve the ambition of improving the quality of life of all Bretons resident in Ille-et-Vilaine. 



ACE Management is a private, specialist portfolio management company which, for 20 years, has made capital investments in technology companies, predominantly in the aerospace, maritime and defence and security sectors. In particular, ACE Management manages the Atalaya Fund (the Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique cluster is a member of its Investment Committee), which invests in French maritime sector businesses at national level. The partnership with the cluster is wholly in keeping with the Atalaya Fund’s approach and will facilitate dialogue between maritime economy stakeholders and increase involvement in blue growth. 


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GOCAPITAL is a fund management company involved in securing finance for innovative and high-tech companies in western France.

For GOCAPITAL, the decision to partner Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique was an obvious one given the company’s regional activities. This partnership strengthens the close links GOCAPITAL is seeking to develop with maritime economy stakeholders. 



The Telegramme Group is a multimedia company with three main core activities:

- Media, with its flagship daily regional newspaper Le Télégramme, available in 19 separate editions across the départements of Brittany (2013 distribution: 207,026 purchased copies, readership: 678,000); its magazines: Bateaux, Course au large and the bi-monthly magazine Bretagne; its television output: Tébéo and Tébésud, local TV channels broadcast on TNT.

- Services, with its advertising business Viamédia and its communications agencies Philéas and Yellow Cake, plus Regionsjob, the leading regional small ads website for job vacancies. 

- Events, with Pen Duick and organising of transatlantic racing (La Route du Rhum - Destination Guadeloupe, Transat Ag2r, Transat Bretagne-Martinique, Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard Cachemire); the international agency OC Sport specialising in sports and events marketing, both for professional yachting and outdoor sports (The Transat, Barcelona World Race, Dongfeng Race Team [Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15]); plus Les Francofolies and Le Printemps de Bourges events.



Philippe Bazire and Olivier Boulouard have been lawyers in Brest since 1982 and 2004, respectively. They work mainly in corporate law and maritime law in particular.

The complexity and multiplicity of national, European and international regulations in maritime matters create a need for companies to feel secure in all legal aspects of their operations. The law firm’s partnership with Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique is based on assuming a role in in the development of the region’s excellence in maritime affairs by enabling the cluster’s members to benefit from the firm’s legal expertise and experience. 


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An ability to adapt and transform is key to a successful business today. Wavestone is a new consultancy created from the combined strengths of two established, recognised firms. Its mission ? To inform and guide the leaders of today and tomorrow and thereby optimise their strategic decision-making.



Sogedev is a long-standing public funding consultancy which specialises in optimising and securing innovation financing, international development and investment. Employing a team of 50 multidisciplinary experts, Sogedev has devised a method for analysing business needs, adhering strictly to current legislation to identify potential funding that is in line with companies’ expansion plans:

- Innovation financing: for a new product or technology for example
- Investment funding for property, equipment and human resources
- International development financing: exploring a new geographical area, setting up in a new country or recruiting an export team, for example.

The partnership with Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique provides Sogedev with an opportunity to help maritime businesses access public funding windows. The consultancy has proven knowledge of its maritime clients’ innovative, international projects. Drawing on this experience, Sogedev can offer its full range of expertise to members of Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique, whose activities are potentially eligible for public funding. 


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Summed up in a few statistics, FIDAL in France represents:

  • 1400 lawyers
  • 90 offices
  • 200-strong legal team devoted to international issues
  • A network of partners operating in 150 countries.

FIDAL is currently the leading firm of corporate lawyers in France and Europe. It has been operating in western France since 1948. The 78 lawyers covering Brittany are based at 6 Bureaus. This regional network means FIDAL can forge closer links with local clients and can better understand the fabric of the local economy.

Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique bases its operations on pursuing a hugely significant ambition: to support and develop maritime activities. FIDAL sees itself as the cluster’s natural partner given their shared values which lie at the heart of the firm’s approach: strong local connections, a desire to serve the community and an ongoing commitment to innovation. This commitment is reflected in FIDAL’s determination to participate in the emergence and development of a powerful maritime economy in Brittany and Loire-Atlantique by helping the cluster’s members enhance the value and security of their projects in France and beyond.


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Serving two regions and nine départements, Caisse d'Epargne Bretagne Pays de Loire is a regional mutual bank that offers its customers a local, reliable and competitive service. The bank of choice for private and business customers alike, Caisse d'Epargne Bretagne Pays de Loire has 424 branches across the regions plus an online banking service, Mon banquier. A key partner in the local economy, the bank provides 15 business centres spread across its area. Its specialist subsidiaries, Sodero Gestion and Batiroc Bretagne Pays de Loire, ensure that Caisse d'Epargne Bretagne Pays de Loire also benefits from recognised expertise in the area of capital investment and property leasing.

This new partnership with Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique strengthens our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Policy that is based on commitment and innovation. Under this policy, Caisse d'Epargne Bretagne Pays de Loire is committed to
- Affirming its role in supporting a socially responsible economy
- Playing its part in green growth

- Leading an active and committed membership.
In concrete terms, Caisse d'Epargne is using social and economic innovation to actively respond to societal issues. and on Twitter: @CaissEpargneBPL 


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GAC Group is an auditing and consultancy firm that improves business competitiveness and growth through public innovation funding, by enhancing fiscal efficiency and via other public financing mechanisms at national and international level.

Operating across 4 continents, GAC has more than 14 years’ accumulated experience and serves more than 2500 clients worldwide. This international dimension has not undermined the Group’s attachment to one of its core values: staying local. GAC therefore has a presence in 7 cities in France and works closely with many companies in the west such as Nautix, Roullier, Invivo, CLS, Incidences Technologies and Leclerc, to name but a few. As a member of the Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique Partners’ Club, it can expand the services it offers to maritime businesses, who will benefit from customised support to improve their performance in HR, finance and innovation.

For further information, see:


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CIC Ouest has a network of more than 340 branches, including 24 business bureaus and 10 CIC private banking branches, spread across 21 départements. This strong local presence promotes quicker decision-making, greater responsiveness and a genuine knowledge of the social and economic fabric for the benefit of the bank’s 780,000 customers.

A closer relationship with project directors to support innovative entrepreneurship is exactly what CIC Ouest is seeking. By joining the Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique Partners’ Club, we are signalling that we share the desire of other economic players in this industry to support our maritime sector.

Our strong local roots and history as a business bank mean we can play an active role in the collective dynamism aspired to by Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique as a means to support the economic development of the regions where we operate. 



AbsisKey specialises in finance for research and innovation. Since 1988, the group has focused exclusively on public funding for research, development and innovation. Drawing on a fifty-strong team of external consultants, AbsisKey’s in-house consultants specialise in assembling and managing finance for collaborative and individual research and innovation projects in France and Europe. The group also benefits from expert evaluators working with the European Commission.

  • More than €2.4 billion in European Funds secured for clients engaged in over 370 French and European-funded projects.
  • An average of 130 tax credit for innovation (CIR) declarations checked each year.
  • Annual adjustment rate of <1%.

Absiskey has supported many French and European projects that fall within the 6 Strategic Areas of Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique, such as Hydrofluv (FUI), SIMEO (FUI officially recognised by both French maritime clusters), Oceanquest (AMI Ademe), Searieus (AMI Ademe), Helios (H2020), La Feyssinne tidal power farm (Feder) and Genissiat (AMI-Ademe).

For several years, France Energies Marines has continued to show its confidence in Absiskey by deploying the web-based platform for managing Absiskey collaborative projects – – for all MRE projects funded by the French national research agency, ANR.

For further information see: 


GROUPE VIDON – Intellectual property

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The Vidon Group, which comprises a network of international intellectual property consultancies, has its head office based in Brittany. It advises and supports researchers and innovative companies on all matters relating to intellectual property at every stage of project development. Founded in Rennes in 1988, the Group has gradually expanded in France, Europe and beyond. It was the first intellectual property consultancy to establish its business in Asia in recent times. Today, it has many offices in France, Thailand and China.

The Vidon Group has built up its business based on compelling core values. Professionalism, a strong local presence and an international vision have enabled the Group to win the confidence of its clients. It has kept that trust by always responding to clients’ needs with a personal, bespoke solution. The Vidon Group supports researchers from the academic and private sectors, as well as institutions involved in technology development and transfer. Its services are adapted to each stage of the development process from detecting and raising awareness of emerging technologies to transferring knowledge of established technologies.

With offices in Rennes, Nantes, Paris, Roscoff and Saint Malo, the Vidon Group is on the ground where marine and maritime sector players are making innovation happen.

The partnership established with Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique since 2015 reflects the Vidon Group’s commitment to participating in the drive to innovate created by the cluster and to seizing the opportunities offered by the maritime economy. The multidisciplinary, multicultural teams that make up the Vidon Group know how to respond to the needs of cluster members, whatever their area of innovation and their questions regarding intellectual property in areas such as patents, trademarks, designs and models, copyright and domain names.

For further information, see:


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Contacts for Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique Partners’ Club:

Sébastien Cann:

Nisha Le Joliff: