The group Gueudet is today one of the main actors of the automobile distribution in France.
The company was founded in 1880 per Charles Gueudet who was then marshal-ferrand with Breteuil-on-Noye (Oise). Impassioned of mechanics, Charles Gueudet creates a factory of bicycles and sewing machines. The bicylettes are marketed under the mark “Gallic the” while the sewing machines carry the mark “Gueudet.” The workshops of Charles Gueudet will develop even an automobile prototype with the whole beginning of the year 1900.
The company is called then Gueudet-Head, Huré being the name of young girl of the woman of Charles Gueudet. The couple will have three wire including two of them, Gustave and Lucien, engineer of the Arts and Métiers and future member of the Société of the engineers of the car (SIA), will make the decision to engage fully in the family company and to develop this one considerably. Manufacturer-mechanics, the Gueudet brothers believe very quickly in the success of the car and decide to create a distribution network in the north of France. The Gueudet company becomes Gueudet Frères. In 1918, the head office is transferred to Amiens (Somme).
In 1920, Gustave Gueudet sign a first contract of distribution with Louis Renault. The legend wants that the two men met on a road of Picardy and that Gustave Gueudet intervened to repair Louis Renault whose vehicle was immobilized due to mechanical problems.
In 1922, the Gueudet brothers inaugurate street of the Jacobins with Amiens the new head office of the company. The building, which gathers the offices, the showroom of the vehicles Renault and the workshops to the center of the city, is quoted in example by all the professionals of automobile industry then in full expansion. This building is always today the head office of the group (19, rue des Otages) but contains nothing any more but offices.
Gustave and Lucien Gueudet quickly undertake the establishment of a true network of garages covering all Picardy. In 1936, they create two shipping companies of travellers, the Artesian Buses and the Picardy Automobile Mails. When the Second world war occurs, the Gueudet establishments are requisitioned, closed or plundered. With the Release, Gustave Gueudet, then 65 years old, decides all to start again, in particular with the assistance of his/her Robert son, 35 years old. The establishments Gueudet Frères develop not only in the automobile distribution with Renault but also in the distribution of cycles (of which the Vélosolex), of farm equipment, industrial vehicles, or in the passenger transport or the distribution of spare parts, fuel and refrigerators (mark Frigidaire).
The Gueudet establishments quickly become an inevitable actor of the local economy and one of the first employers at the regional level. In 1956, Gustave Gueudet is named Chevalier of the Légion of honor by the Economic affair and Minister for Finance. Robert Gueudet is as for him, amongst other things, regional president of the National Employers' federation of Construction and Automobile Repair (C.S.N.C.R.A.) and member of the management committee of the Car Club of Picardy and Aisne.
In 1960, the decision is made to separate the activities from distribution and transport of the group. Gustave Gueudet and Robert Gueudet obtains the branch distribution while Lucien Gueudet and his son-in-law Pierre Amiaud, engineer of the Central Ecole of Arts and Manufactures (ECP), obtain the activities of refrigeration and passenger transport.
In 1966, Robert Gueudet disappears prematurely at the 55 years age. Gustave Gueudet, as for him, disappears in 1970 at the 90 years age. The company enters then a phase of transition until 1980 when two of wire of Robert, Jean-Claude and Patrick, become managing directors of the group.
Jean-Claude Gueudet and Patrick Gueudet, HEC Lausanne, will devote their energies to develop the group, always in the same branches of industry. Under their impulse, the company will rise among the inevitable actors of the automobile distribution in France and will increase the number of its automobile partners. Indeed, to the historical partner, Renault, will in particular come to be added Nissan, Opel, BMW, Mini, Audi, Volkswagen and Toyota.
In 2005, Patrick Gueudet is named Chevalier of the Légion of honor by the Ministry for the Economy, Finances and Industry.
- the site of Gueudet
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