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A Vatelien competing against Red Bull and Cola
A Vatelien competing against Red Bull and Cola - Vatel

A Vatelien competing against Red Bull and Cola

The joint founder of an energy drink from the French Landes region that can now be found all over in France, Benoit Mollet tells us “Truc de fou’s” extraordinary feat.


Benoit, a father of two from Biarritz, is an enthusiastic entrepreneur.

He loves challenges and he keeps a watchful eye on the concept, ideas and innovations that change our habits as consumers.

He’s hyperactive by nature and never ready to accept failure so he puts everything into his work in order to attain his goals.

After obtaining a diploma in international business, Benoit Mollet, a born businessman, decided to continue his studies at Vatel Bordeaux, where he specialised in restaurant management.

Even at that time, he was full of ideas, one of which was to popularise the famous “tourtière” (a local cake made with apples and Armagnac) in the USA.

His future took him down another path, however, and his final internship, in the USA, encouraged him to open his own restaurant, “Le Franchouillard”, in Bordeaux in 2001.

It combined regional cuisine with a convivial atmosphere and chic but friendly surroundings. It was an immediate success but Benoit decided to sell it five years later to take on a new challenge.


“Truc de Fou” his crazy project!

  • The image that went with energy drinks
  • The link with extreme sports, the idea of stretching oneself and going beyond one’s limits
  • The challenge to position himself as a direct competitor to Redbull or Monster

It is decided, he changes jobs and launch a “totally french” energy drink!

The choice of product name seemed obvious. “It was a French name in a market that used only English. It’s a very common expression and is very representative of the challenge ahead!”

After almost ten years on the market, “Truc de Fou” the product is sold throughout France and is now highly successful:  ranks 2nd nationally on the night-time market and 3rd in major retail chains.


What about the international market?

“We’ve made some progress but we prefer to concentrate even more on our home market here in France.” Benoit is aware of the investments and work that will be required. He believes that the market will stabilise over the next five years and he already has a few ideas on how to obtain additional turnover from other products.

If he was to give advice to students looking to set up their own business:

“Never set limits. Believe in yourself and give everything you’ve got to your work to meet your goals. That’s the way to success!"


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