Staff Interview - Jean-Philippe Lorinquer, Chief Revenue Officer

Curious to get to know OSS Ventures's executive suite? Our Chief Revenue Officer Jean-Philippe Lorinquer explains how he helps clients and cofounders advance in their industry 4.0 journey.

For some people, the entrepreneurial lifestyle calls to them.

JP is one of those people. He built a successful career in corporate business and sales, until he couldn’t resist the thrill of the startup life any longer. While maintaining his corporate job, he began dabbling in startups by investing as a business angel, before realizing that if he didn’t go for it, he never would. Leaving his corporate management position behind, he began working in sales and management for startups, until he hit a certain birthday (coincidentally, the birthday has a lot in common with 4.0), and he decided that if he was going to launch his own company, it was now or never.

Having already met Renan, he integrated into OSS as a cofounder on the project that would eventually become Fabriq. Though he had to leave after a few months due to personal reasons, while he was with the project he met and developed one of Fabriq’s first clients, who remains a valued partner with OSS today, LISI Aerospace. A couple of years passed before the stars aligned and JP came back to OSS as Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). 

As CRO, he has two main responsibilities. He coaches the startuppers as they build their sales process, and he creates and nurtures client relationships to ensure startups have a maximum MRR when they leave the studio. 

JP Lorinquer, AKA the Cupid of cofounders and clients

Though JP likes to joke that his contribution to cofounders is his extensive collection of Powerpoints, his expertise couldn’t be distilled into a slideshow. Not only does he have corporate sales experience, he has also worked in sales for a multitude of tech startups across many different sectors, building his insight into both the corporate clients OSS startups work with and the startups themselves. When cofounders join OSS, they go through the OSS process: first completing user research, then iterating a product, finalizing the minimum viable product with early adopter factories, and finally building up their client base. JP has an obvious role in the final step, but he also contributes during the product development process thanks to his knowledge of OSS clients and industry at large. JP functions as a messenger between the market and cofounders, giving startuppers feedback on what will receive strong traction and what could potentially be a problem. Oftentimes, the cofounders are totally new to the industrial sector, and since JP has such a close relationship with his clients, he can help cofounders understand how best to communicate with clients and give them input on what the market needs. 

A smooth...listener? 

Salespeople often get a bad rap. According to JP, the most common misconception about his position is that he is a smooth talker. But in fact, he’s a listener, not a talker. OSS has an overarching goal, which is to take operations to the next level through the implementation of Industry 4.0 technologies. JP’s objective, same as the rest of the OSS team, is to affect that change, not hit a sales quota. In fact, if JP is consulting with a client on their Industry 4.0 needs and realizes they could benefit from the services or product of a company outside of the OSS portfolio, he will let the client know. This freedom allows him to build a high level of trust with his clients, and therefore a deep understanding of their needs. 

Finding clients to support OSS’s cofounders is no small task, however. Many industrial companies are just beginning to scratch the surface of digital possibilities, and are not sure how to launch their digital transformation. So how does JP do it? Through good ol’ sales elbow grease.

For example, he happened upon an article one day describing how Petit Bateau was looking to incorporate Industry 4.0 technologies into one of their historic manufacturing sites to incorporate on-demand manufacturing. Petit Bateau invited JP to their factory to show him what they were currently doing and what they would like to do, and after understanding the site’s goals, he devised a selection of companies with Industry 4.0 solutions who could help Petit Bateau reach their goals. To this day, they remain a close partner with OSS. 

OSS, according to JP, is the catalyst and accelerator that helps clients move from the realization they need to integrate digital tools in their factories to the act of implementing those tools. This is the biggest impact of OSS, which is possible thanks not only to the willingness of the clients to embark on their digital transformation, but also the efficacy of the OSS team. OSS startups iterate a product, but OSS iterates itself too, always in pursuit of the best approach. For JP, it’s this inexhaustible curiosity that sets the OSS staff apart. Many of the OSS staff are experts in their field, and yet they are always questioning themselves and each other. In fact, as JP says, the office would be in danger of becoming intellectual, if it weren’t for how willing the OSS staff is to laugh at themselves and each other. 

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