The ENGIE initiative Rassembleurs d’Energies contributes to developing sustainable energy access and fights against fuel poverty for all who enroll, and is thus fully in phase with the environmentally and socially responsible ENGIE policy.  

"Today, 20% of people around the world still have no access to electricity. Even in Europe, one person in four is in energy poverty. As a responsible company and a world leader in energy supply, it was our responsibility to do something about this situation."

This explanation of the reasons why ENGIE launched the ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergies initiative in 2011 comes from Anne Chassagnette, Group Head of Environmental and Social Responsibility. The basic idea is for the Group to take action in its operating countries and regions by supporting projects that promote access to sustainable energy for vulnerable communities. So a solidarity investment company was formed to achieve this goal.

Commitment and progress

Coordinated by a team of five, ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergies is a French simplified joint-stock company (SAS) and works in tandem with the ENGIE Corporate Foundation and the Group's internal NGOs: Codegaz and Energy Assistance.

"Our ambition differs from that of a standard fund," explains ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Energies CEO Laure Vinçotte. "The social and environmental impact we aim to achieve is more important than the financial performance that underpins the long-term future of the fund. Essentially, we're about commitment and progress."

To date, €4.1 million has been invested in 10 companies, with individual investments ranging from €150,000 to €1 million. "Last year was the most active in our history, with 6 new investments made," continues Laure Vinçotte. "We plan to support selected companies for between 5 and 8 years, after which our goal is to reinvest in other projects."

The ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergies Flexible corporate mutual investment fund (FCPE), which invests its solidarity funds in the joint-stock company, achieves a yield of 17%.

Five major families of investment

Until now, ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergies has focused its involvement on five distinct areas: energy efficiency in Europe, solar power and micro-grids in Africa and Asia, the use of biomass in a social rehabilitation company supported by ENGIE Italia, and biogas.

Some of these projects have already reached a very mature stage, including Foncière Chênelet and Habitat et Humanisme in France, both of which help vulnerable people to live in buildings that deliver superior energy performance. Other examples include Village Ventures and Simpa Networks in India, which offer individual domestic solar power systems for urban and rural communities to provide lighting and cell phone charging.

This year, ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergies will move up to the next level with a presence in Mexico, and the introduction of improved energy-efficient cooking stoves.

What is a solidarity investment fund?

French FCPEs are ethical corporate mutual investment funds that invest between 5% and 10% of their assets in socially supportive companies. The remaining 90% is invested in SRIs (Socially Responsible Investments).

Corporates that offer their employees a company savings plan (Plan d'Épargne d'Entreprise / PEE) or group retirement savings plan (Plan d'Épargne pour la Retraite COllectif / PERCO) must offer investors the option to invest in this type of fund. At ENGIE, 7,400 employees have already invested in the ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Énergie FCPE.

Laure Vinçotte: In 2015, ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Energies intends to continue the process of diversifying both geographically and technologically

Laure Vinçotte: "In 2015, ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Energies intends to continue the process of diversifying both geographically and technologically"

ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Energies CEO Laure Vinçotte believes that it took time for ENGIE's solidarity investment company to become known and develop its ideas. Today, the priority for this Group initiative is to press ahead with its projects in Latin America, and give priority to smart technologies, such as improved cooking stoves and biogas.

Anne Chassagnette: ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies gives the Group a very solid and active presence in the world of the social and solidarity economy

Anne Chassagnette: "ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies gives the Group a very solid and active presence in the world of the social and solidarity economy"

A laboratory or suggestion box; that's the way Anne Chassagnette, Head of Environmental and Social Responsibility at ENGIE, sees the ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Energies initiative. Introduced by the Group in 2011, this investment fund helps the international development of companies that achieve high levels of energy and employment performance, based on the volume of CO2 emissions they save and the number of jobs they generate.

Olivier Desclée, Project Leader for ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies

Olivier Desclée, Project Leader for ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies

Olivier is employed by ENGIE's Belgian subsidiary Electrabel. Within ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies, he works alongside LivingStones, a company that builds and renovates social housing. In Olivier's view, the responsible nature of this project, the environmental impact of the company and its financial stability are all major benefits.

Marielle Lacoste, ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies volunteer

Marielle Lacoste, ENGIE Rassembleurs d’Énergies volunteer

Marielle is involved in the Simpa Networks project; a startup social enterprise selling domestic solar power systems in the State of Uttar Pradesh in Northern India. This rewarding experience is making her more aware of environmental issues, and strengthening her belief that there are alternative energy solutions that can be effective in emerging countries.