Journey through 150 years of history, guided by EM Normandie’s founder Jules Siegfried
Discover more about the rich history of this forward-looking School
"Action is life"
One of my grandfathers was a draper and the other a manufacturer, while my father was in the cotton trade. Business was in my blood! I was just 14 years old when I began to train with my father and my uncle (Roederer, also a prominent character), in Le Havre, then Liverpool. I remember begging him to let me go to the United States, a country which was on the verge of a civil war! I met Abraham Lincoln! Everything was happening at once! I got into business and politics. They said I was a doer. They said I had an Anglo-American outlook. I was a proud man. My motto was “living is doing”. And I intended to defend my beliefs and push boundaries. I fought for workers' housing, the famous social housing of today.
We were no longer able to source cotton. I was 40. My parents and friends were willing to help me, and my brother was as bold and committed as me. It’s clearly in our genes! We joined forces to set up our business, Siegfried Frères, which imported cotton from India. We were the first Frenchmen to open a branch in Mumbai. Then came New Orleans, Liverpool and Savannah. The world was our oyster! My brother stepped down from our growing company. It was now 1871 and we founded the first French business school outside Paris, the next chapter of our partnership. Today it is known as EM Normandie!