histoire CPME

History of CPME

François Asselin became the President of CPME in January 2015. He took the lead and gave impetus to a new dynamic in order to prepare the Confederation to tackle the challenges ahead and always providing better service to its SMEs members.

CPME (formerly CGPME) in 8 dates

  • 1944: Léon Gingembre, entrepreneur of an industrial SME, created the General Confederation of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises to defend and promote owner-managers businesses in which the director invests his own assets, thereby taking a significant risk. He said: “The boss of an SME is someone who has committed all his financial assets to his company, someone who performs real and unique responsibility and management functions, who puts his knowledge at risk and, in case of failure, his honour!
  • 1958: CGPME  calls on candidates in French parliamentary elections to commit themselves to a program in favour of SMEs. 220 members of the French Parliament joined the newly created Parliamentary Association of SMEs .
  • 1972: Léon Gingembre met with the President of the French Republic, Georges Pompidou. The result was the French Commerce and Trade law of 27th December 1973, known as the Royer Law.
  • 1983: for the first time, CGPME strongly recommended a very broad involvement of SMEs in the municipal elections. Since then, for every major election, it has coordinated entrepreneurs’ speeches at crucial times, to get their voices heard. 
  • 2003: Planète PME, the first national day organised by CGPME, took place at the Palais des Congrès in Paris: 6 members of the French government including Jean-Pierre Raffarin, the Prime Minister, 20 leading figures from the French business world and 40 members of the French Parliament took part.
  • 2015: François Asselin was elected President of the Confederation. He developed and mobilised a strategic roadmap for 2020 to revitalize the organisation, always at the service of SMEs. 
  • 2017: CGPME became CPME. A new name and a new visual identity for an organisation projecting itself in the future.
  • 2018: CPME received AFNOR’s Quali’Op Service Commitment label. This guarantees the quality and reliability of the services provided to members.