The 2011/12/09 at 05:41
Pélagie Harbour and Mathieu Neu
“Fire insurance for wealth in times of crisis.” This is how Jean-François Faure, the founder of AuCoffre.com. Launched in 2009, the web site offers over 1,000 types of coins indexed in an extremely detailed manner, from an investment as well as a numismatic point of view. Each coin is presented online, via images and details on its technical and economic characteristics. “Certain enthusiastic investors buy and resell their products within a single day. Others make long-term investments and wish to acquire gold to resell it in a few years’ time. The sums invested are very variable and can exceed 1 million euros for certain buyers.”
Interview with Jean-François Faure, the founder of AuCoffre.com
As its name suggests, the principle of the web site (“in the safe” in French) is for each purchased product to be kept in the care of the company in a safe. AuCoffre.com has also created its own gold coin, the “Vera Valor” that meets several desires. “We needed a coin that could be created on demand to better manage certain supply problems,” confides Paul McGowan, International Development Manager. “We also needed a universal product that is not associated with a particular political stance, religion, country, or existing currency.” The only thing that this coin represents is one ounce (about 1,360 euros).
Periods of economic crisis are synonymous with capital gains for gold. This resource has notched up 600% growth in the last ten years. “It’s not impossible for the ounce to reach 2,500 dollars (1,876 euros) in 2012, or even more in the case of sovereign debt,” Jean-François Faure. “But gold is above all an investment characterised by its stability over time.” The yellow metal never collapses, however much the global economy may be shaken up.
The company also manages resale. “We supply important guarantees on the solvability of member purchasers,” continues Jean-François Faure. Preserving the environment is also a key notion to the company’s offer. Paul McGowan reassures that “the renowned Vera Valor comes from clean extraction. Neither cyanide nor mercury are used, unlike the case in classic mining. We limit as far as possible the intervention of harmful chemical products, in conformity with clean extraction objectives: a principle that aims to develop a gold mining approach that is attentive to the environment and humans.”
1 AuCoffre.com currently has around 5,000 members. In 2010, its turnover reached 25 million euros. On the strength of its success, the company is continuing its international development. Italian and Spanish versions of the web site are scheduled for 2012.