Born in Brittany and a psychologist by training, Aude de Thuin is an entrepreneur with a special knack for creating business ventures in response to emerging social trends. She is also known for her commitment to building recognition for the role of women in society.
In 1981 she founded ADT Consultants for the purpose of organising La Semaine Internationale du Marketing Direct (International Direct Marketing Week) at a time when the concept of direct marketing was still largely limited to mail order. In 1993 she sold the business to found Compagnie Scheffer, the organiser of two events: l’Art du Jardin (The Art of Gardening) and Créations et Savoir Faire (Creativity and Know-how). L’Art du Jardin took the traditional flower show into a new dimension by showcasing different basic types of gardens, outdoor furniture and the finest achievements in botanical production. Devoted to arts and crafts, Créations et Savoir Faire sparked a veritable explosion of creative leisure activities in France.
In 2003 she sold Compagnie Scheffer as well and founded PV Concept, the organiser, through its subsidiary Wefcos, of the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society. Held annually in Deauville, the Women’s Forum brings together influential women from around the world (with 1,400 delegates representing 80 countries) to work towards the better representation of women and greater gender parity in all of society’s seats of power. In 2011, having built its international reputation, she resigned from the Women’s Forum to found Thuin et Associés, the organiser of Osons la France.
Conceived to encourage society to resist the current economic gloom and “dare [to believe in] France,” this new event is more a movement than a forum, spotlighting France’s creative and innovative strengths and successes in all fields of industry, business, science, research, education and the arts.
Aude de Thuin is the author of Le Livre Blanc du Marketing Direct (The Direct Marketing White Paper, 1985), En Direct (published by Dunod, 1993), Jardins Ephémères (Ephemeral Gardens, Minerva, 1999) and Femmes, Si Vous Osiez (Women, If You Dare, Robert Laffont, January 2012). Her most recent book urges women to break free from outdated precepts, pursue their ambitions and show that gender parity is a driver of progress as well as a necessity for the future.
Aude de Thuin is also active in women’s associations like Force Femmes and City of Joy, a charity founded by the activist and playwright Eve Ensler to help women victims of interethnic violence in Congo.
Much in demand as a speaker at events around the world and as a commentator in the media, she is regularly invited to participate in discussions on women’s issues with governmental groups, private associations and think tanks.
Aude de Thuin has been decorated as a Chevalier in the French Legion of Honor and Order of Agricultural Merit, and as an Officer in the Order of Merit. In January 2012 the EDC management school in Paris awarded her its Ethics and Governance Trophy in the category Entrepreneur de sa Passion, presented each year to an outstanding entrepreneur motivated by personal convictions.