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Sandrine Preto: communications services

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“The climate is great, it’s sunny, it’s safe, and access to material is much better nowadays than it was when I was younger,” says Sandrine Preto, who returned to her birthplace, the island of Reunion, in 2019 to set up her own communications consultancy. “What’s not to like?” Sandrine offers services to companies like advertising support, digital campaigns, video production, and social media and website support. “It’s great to be back from metropolitan France. Here I work on my own terms and can build very close relationships with my clients.”

Developing sustainable client relationships was crucial and Sandrine invests a lot in this area. “I have long-term clients with whom I work regularly on their annual communications plans, but I also work for communications agencies and other types of businesses if the project is appealing. But I can afford to choose who I work with, and I always prefer close, respectful relationships with open dialogue. I’m not interested in cold business relationships. I don’t like to work with big multinationals and clients who don’t share my values; this is a red flag for me.”

Reunion, like any other place, has been seeing a wave of digitalisation across all business sectors, which has fed into Sandrine’s workflow, and the COVID-19 crisis has only accelerated that trend. “Many businesses didn’t recognise the value of digital marketing before. Now that digital is becoming the norm, they are seeing its value. New social media and apps sprang up almost overnight - even I find it difficult to keep up. So I’ve been quite busy, I can’t complain.”

The turbulence in the markets has led to delays in payments however, so Sandrine had to take some measures to deal with that. An EU-guaranteed loan through Crea-Sol, backed by the EIF under the Investment Plan for Europe served as a safety net for payment delays and also helped her keep the business moving. “My car broke down recently and you will appreciate that it’s an essential part of my work as I have to get around the island. Since traffic is such a big issue in Reunion, I decided to go for a motorbike instead. I’ve adjusted it so that I can carry my equipment, and probably save a couple of hours per day now. Traffic is really something here in Reunion.”

Company: Sandrine Preto (Sainte-Marie, Réunion)

Type of business: marketing & communication

EIF financing: EaSI Guarantee Financial Instrument, EFSI

Financial intermediary: Créa-sol 

For further information about EIF intermediaries in France, please refer to: http://www.eif.org/what_we_do/where/fr

 

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