December 6, 2022

In Fond Gaston: "before we scale up, let's make sure we have an impact"

In Fond Gaston: "before we scale up, let's make sure we have an impact"

What is the activity of à Fond Gaston ?

A Fond Gaston is a small business that works in the field of transportation of people and goods to transform bicycles into an affordable, reliable and environmentally responsible means of transportation.  

We therefore propose an incentive to buy an electrically assisted bicycle (EAB) by installing kits that are installed on the bicycles to allow their transformation into an EAB with a cost half as important and an ecological impact much less.  

What is your impact?

Our objective is to convert a maximum of daily trips made by car into kilometers made by bike, we are talking about a ratio of 1 to 100 in terms of ecological impact. Only providing a new mode of mobility creates a rebound effect, which is inherent to any innovation, which is why calculating our overall net impact is difficult: we cannot measure whether the kilometers done are essential kilometers, those of the "velotaffeurs" for example, or are leisure kilometers.  

We are currently collecting data from our customers in order to get a precise idea of usage, substitution effects and rebound effect.


I think we need to decouple the notions of sobriety, which is to reduce consumption, to drive fewer kilometers for example, from efficiency, which is the way to drive those kilometers.  

Sobriety is a collective and political approach, companies can act on efficiency.  

Today, companies must propose solutions that are both efficient and sober to counter the rebound effects. Efficiency alone is no longer enough, as we can see with the transition to 4G and then 5G, efficient solutions lead to an increase in demand, and today's companies must propose models where consumption decreases, which is a real collective challenge.  

A Fond Gaston, a sober unicorn?

We are in the midst of thinking about our future.  

Would hypergrowth in my business make society better? I'm not sure yet.  

In this context, there is no question today of raising funds, I prefer an organic growth model, where profitability takes precedence over the logic of hypergrowth. In this respect, I am more in line with the SME model than the startup model and it is healthier, in terms of impact, as long as I don't know if my company has a net positive impact. I take my inspiration from nature and an organic growth model, to see if the Darwinism process doesn't push us aside.  

It is all the more important to have these reflections because, on the scale of history, it is from the Industrial Revolution onwards and the scaling up of numerous technologies and processes that human activity began to be extremely harmful.

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