For every business, the most important asset is its people. At Gift Baskets Overseas, we understand this deeply, and consider it one of our company’s core values. It’s why we help other businesses create and execute their employee loyalty programs and service recognition awards. So today, we are launching a new series of Behind the Scene blogs to show you our teams, the people behind your corporate gifts delivered worldwide.
Gift Baskets Overseas in France is represented by Mickael Paul, a founder of FranceOfGastronomy. In our first interview, GBO’s French regional manager talks to Victoria Clark, Customer Service Team Lead, about gift delivery in his country and the EU, the upcoming holiday season, and antique wines.
Gift Baskets Overseas in France
France is a very important destination for our corporate clients. Each year, especially during the winter holiday season, we process hundreds of orders to multiple locations in France! So it’s very interesting to learn more about the people behind those gifts.
Tell us a couple of words about yourself.
Paul: “I was born in Mâcon, a city in the Burgundy region of east-central France, in 1981. My grandparents were farmers and produced a lot of things like vines, cereals, etc… Some of people in my family still make some products of the Earth these days. Even me, I produce antique alcohols.
I like to discover the world and I traveled a lot to places like China, Thailand, Cambodia.
Selling gifts and gift baskets with fruits, tasty treats, and liquor from all over the world fall naturally into that scope of interests!”
How was FranceOfGastronomy “born”?
Paul: “I had a lot of family members who were local producers of artisan sausages, cheese, wine, and jam, so they gave me an idea of putting those online and try selling and people liked it. I still work with them and use many of their their products for the GBO baskets. I use jam from a family member that won a second award this year for the best product in the World (not only in Europe!). And the artisan sausages I use are the best in the area, once you try those you will not come back to commercial ones.”
How the Gift Baskets Overseas orders are handled in France?
Paul: “We’re a family team. During the low season it is only me and my dad who take cake of all orders. In December, I have my family help me out: mom, aunt, brothers, and we are 6 in total.
We do all operations manually. One sorts the items, another arranges those inside a box, someone else does the wrapping.”
“In the busy days during holiday season, I work from 5 am till midnight. My family saves me at those times and the best part is that they are happy to do it and wait for a high season impatiently! We always have a box of delicious chocolates in the middle of the table for everyone to enjoy while taking a break.”
What happens to the gifts next?
“I use Colissimo from La Poste (local post) for the 2-3 business days orders, and Chronopost for the overnight delivery.
As to the weekend deliveries, especially for the orders placed on Sundays, I’m happy to say that shipping companies are taking steps for providing Sunday deliveries soon. For now, couriers deliver on Saturday mornings only, but we hope to overcome that obstacle in 2019!”
Do you have any difficulties finding content for gift baskets ordered internationally?
“In general no, I don’t have major issues. Sometimes you have very American items or formats listed that I cannot find here, for example, the package formats are too small and here in France they sell only bigger packages. So, in such cases I always include a bigger package.
Some times the Ferrero Rocher chocolates are difficult to find for Christmas gift baskets in December, as they are all gone due to high demand, so I offer an alternative, much higher quality gourmet chocolates that local people appreciate.”
Do you feel ready for the Holiday Season ahead?
“In 2017, we processed 30% more orders than in 2016. Understanding the trend, we are preparing ahead of time, and this year are ready to deliver the same levels of growth! Keep sending!”