Raynaud Mignot, CEO of Holland Green Science Europe, brings more than three decades of business development experience to the company.
In his role as CEO of the Holland Green Science Group, Raynaud brings a global vision for expansion and leadership, drawing on his 17 years with The HEINEKEN Company and 14 years leading small and mid-sized enterprises. As CEO at Holland Green Science Europe, Raynaud uses the business principles that helped him shape other global companies for success, both at home and abroad.
Get to know Raynaud with these questions that’ll take you through his career, experiences, and his drive-in business.
Q: What unique perspective do you bring to the freeze-drying and in vitro digestion industry?
Raynaud Mignot (RM): The fields I’ve been in were more mature markets – the beer industry, of course, is very mature. The freeze-drying industry is changing rapidly; development and new businesses and even total industries are emerging. The same goes for the in vitro digestion industry. Think about the drying of insects, worms and seaweed, or about testing food with NERDT instead of on animals. And although those are different markets, the other 90% of how to do business remains the same. When you have a lot of experience in other industries that are more developed, you can bring insights to the table that help your team implement their vision.
I’m learning a lot in the field of freeze-drying and in vitro digestion from my colleagues, and in turn I am helping with critical activities like financing, distribution, contractual management, and human resources.
Our strategy is to be there as soon as the international markets come along. The thing we need to have is the supply chain in order to quickly scale up and supply them with the equipment they need to be working with the right partners around the world. That’s what we’ve been doing. And it’s just a lot of fun to be part of this emerging market and play a crucial role.
Q: How does your experience in business development translate to Holland Green Science?
RM: I think it’s a very nice combination to know how corporate companies think, as well as what you need to do when you’re a small to mid-sized entrepreneur. In both environments, I was always working on the building phase of the company, looking for distribution channels, new opportunities, and acquisition potential. I’ve managed a lot of mergers and acquisitions, which is something I also bring to the table, especially for a developing industry.
I also have a lot of experience in building strong teams. You need to be a serving leader who helps your team grow and establish what they need to establish. It’s very important that we have skilled people who know exactly how to manage the complex freeze-drying process and the intricate In vitro digestion process.
Q: What is the biggest challenge facing the freeze- drying market?
RM: We see the same thing that happens with most emerging markets: there is all this hype first, but then it gets its feet on the ground and resets. This was the case with the internet, for example. In the freeze-drying market, we see that there is equipment available for the big players, but the smaller producers are left behind… because there is no equipment available, the equipment is too expensive, or the equipment is too large to fit into the smaller companies. By adjusting the size of the equipment and a lower cost price, we would like to increase the availability of equipment for the smaller producers.
Another challenge in the freeze-drying market, as is in every market at this moment, is sustainability. We are already environmentally friendly and coolant with our freeze-drying equipment. There is still some improvement possible according the energy consumption in this Branche.
Q: What is the key for people in the freeze-drying market to understand, especially in these emerging markets?
RM: The technique of freeze-drying is complex and you really need to know what you’re talking about. The key is to fully understand how to use and optimize the 3 variables: temperature, vacuum and applied / added energy. Getting it right is not a simple thing, so you need the right equipment and a supplier that has the knowledge and experience to help you understand how it works. That’s where Holland Green Science comes in.
I know firsthand how effective they’ve been in educating me on everything I need to know about this. And although I’m still learning I have some of the best teachers on my team. Knowing we can offer that same education to our clients, many of whom may just be starting out in these new markets, is a major value add.
Q: How fits in vitro digestion in the complete picture?
RM: Especially with all the new food developments (we already talked about them briefly before) think for example of burgers from worms, seaweeds and/or insects, you want to know how this digested. And that’s exactly what NERDT our Near Real Digestive Tract can tell us.
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Get the latest news, updates, and information from Raynaud and all the leadership at Holland Green Science. Connect with Raynaud on LinkedIn to learn more about his role as CEO at Holland Green Science International, working out of Europe, and how he plans to help supply the global freeze-drying industry with the equipment needed to produce high quality worldwide.