Having studied at three leading institutions for entrepreneurship, graduate Fanny Aizier knows the most important part of being an entrepreneur is action. Launching a new online concept store immediately after graduating from the Global Entrepreneurship Program in 2014, we caught up with Fanny to tell us more about what she did after graduating from the entrepreneurship program, taking place in France, China and the US. Fanny also gives great advice for future students of the program!
Fanny, what was the highlight of the Global Entrepreneurship Program for you?
I was born in France and lived in the US for a while so for me the highlight was really to discover China and Asia. I was amazed by this country and I loved being completely immersed in its culture in Hangzhou. It definitely opened my eyes to a whole new perspective. I am also extremely grateful that I discovered Kung Fu there. I started taking classes in China and I now practice Kung Fu in France. It has become a huge part of my life and I love it!
What was the benefit for you of studying with such an international cohort?
For me, being surrounded by people from all over the globe during the Global Entrepreneurship meant I learnt and discovered new approaches to things every single day. We studied, worked, lived and travelled t Program ogether so we really got to know each other extremely well. It is amazing to think that even though we are all now back in our respective countries, our cohort is still so closely connected!
Fanny, Helga, Jinny and Uzma won the #DiversePeopleUnite campaign by South African Airways and Trevolta during their time studying in Pace University as part of the Global Entrepreneurship Program! See the team’s winning video here
What advice would you give to future Global Entrepreneurship Program students?
There is a Bruce Lee saying that I really like which is “It is not how much fixed knowledge you can accumulate, but what you can apply livingly that counts” and to me this is why this program is great because you learn how to apply your knowledge to the business field. My advice to future students of the Global Entrepreneurship Program would be to focus on making things happen in real life, not just on paper.
How has the Global Entrepreneurship Program helped you with your entrepreneurial ventures?
Throughout the year, we worked on four consulting projects with four companies, working closely with real entrepreneurs. The experience was very inspiring and it made me believe that I could do it too! It introduced me to four different industries in such a short period of time. It taught me how to bring a big project to life as a team and it gave me access to great documentation that I could use for planning my own company.
Could you tell us a bit more about your start-up Catho Rétro?
My sister and I are Christians and we didn’t relate to the products available on the market today. We believed there was an opportunity to make Christian items more fun, appealing and accessible. It was a very exciting idea and as soon as I finished classes in the US, I came back to France to start this project with her full-time. We teamed up with a childhood friend who is also an artistic director. Together, we created our own product line and worked with suppliers to create a Christian concept store online: Catho Rétro. I am writing my GEP thesis about Catho Rétro while making it happen at the same time. It is amazing to have the opportunity to work on something so concrete on my thesis and it pushes me to plan the project very carefully.
Find out more about Catho Rétro here
To fund the project we are currently running a crowdfunding campaign on KissKissBankBank. The concept of crowdfunding is extremely exciting and we are taking this challenge to heart… and we need your support! Find out more here: http://www.kisskissbankbank.com/catho-retro-le-concept-store-religieux Thank you!
Discover the Global Entrepreneurship Program – taking place at EMLYON, Zhejiang University & Pace University