PMU names Richard Viel as new chairman

Emmanuelle Malecaze-Doublet is set to become the first woman managing director of PMU.
Emmanuelle Malecaze-Doublet is set to become the first woman managing director of PMU.

Viel is to replace Philippe Augier, who has announced that he will step down after two years.

France.- The horse racing betting operator Pari Mutuel Urbain (PMU) has announced changes to its board, with Philippe Augier to step down as chairman.

The board has proposed Richard Viel as his replacement to chair the board. He is the former chief executive of phone and internet business Bouygues Telecom, which he joined in 1998 as director of customer operations.

Meanwhile, PMU’s current deputy general manager Emmanuelle Malecaze-Doublet has been proposed as managing director. Malecaze-Doublet has worked at PMU since September 2018. Before joining the company, she was an associate partner at McKinsey & Company for almost six years. She would be the first woman to take the role of managing director.

Augier, who has been chairman since June 2020 and executive chairman since October 2021, is stepping down to devote himself to his duties as an elected official in Deauville and to new personal projects.

He said: “During my term as president of PMU, I have been keen to continue modernising and contributing to the promotion of a formidable company that is committed, useful and is undergoing profound transformation.

“Despite the economic and health crisis that the PMU and the entire horse racing industry went through, we have collectively been able to cope. I would like to thank Emmanuelle Malecaze-Doublet for her unfailing involvement at my side, and I have every confidence in her, and the entire management committee, for the future.”

The French gambling regulator L’Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ) has reported that gross gambling revenue in France totalled €10.70bn in 2021. That’s a rise of 7 per cent year-on-year. But despite the recovery, the figure remains below pre-pandemic levels. GGR in 2019 was €11.10bn.

The two big French gaming monopolies, the lottery operator La Française des Jeux (FDJ) and horse racing monopoly Pari Mutual Urbain (PMU), along with French land-based casinos, were together responsible for €8.60bn, up 3.6 per cent year-on-year. Land-based casinos accounted for just €1.08bn of that as casinos were closed until October 30.

FDJ has reported revenue of €613m for its first quarter. That’s an increase of 14 per cent year-on-year. Stakes rose 10.2 per cent year-on-year to €5.06bn.

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