“They live in a vacuum. They are not interested in anyone… ”In Arles and Val-d’Isère, the very closed meetings of the Napoleons

By Alexandre Duyck

Posted today at 04:53

With an angry hand, often in felt-tip pen, other times with the help of collages, mysterious activists regularly inscribe four letters on the walls of the historic center of Arles (Bouches-du-Rhône). Always the same, “N”, “A”, “P”, “O”, to form a single name, declined in the plural: ” Les Napo ». It is systematically accompanied by not really benevolent words: “Les Napo, Arles hates you”; “The Napos, get out of the way”; “Napo, neoliberal Mafia”.

Place du Forum, this nerve center of the city with its statue of the writer Frédéric Mistral, its bars and heated discussions, regulars believe they have solved the riddle. The Napos would either be a “Gathering of Freemasons”, or a sect. Anyway, funny guys. “Fadas”.

“You have to see them get off the TGV, quips a figure from Arles. All with their straw hats, the ladies in designer linen dresses, the men in obligatory white shirts because, of course, in Provence, as it is hot, it is well known, not everyone dresses ‘in white. Oh you know what? It looks like Tintin in Congo ! »

Rickshaw bikes

Every summer, the parade is indeed funny. Regardless of whether it takes at most ten minutes on foot to reach the city center from the station, the Napos often prefer to use the rickshaw bikes at their disposal, like those seen in Asia. Without taking into account that no Arlésien, even by 40 ° C in the shade, will never dare to carry a boater. Rather die!

“Napoleons is to make people react, like a mnemonic device that creates controversy. »The founders of the organization

In reality, this organization is based in Paris, rue Vivienne, a stone’s throw from the Place de la Bourse. Baptized the Napoleons (without accent), it was founded in 2015 and depends on the company Momentum, created by Mondher Abdennadher, 59, and Olivier Moulierac, 54, two children of the triumphant advertising of the 1980s and 1990s, raised under the rule of their former boss, Jacques Séguéla.

Mondher Abdennadher was born in Sfax, Tunisia, into a French-speaking and French-speaking family. Her father was a trader. He studied at the Lycée Carnot in Tunis before arriving in Paris and entering a business school. Then joined the RSCG advertising agency in 1985 with the main objective of opening the agency’s Middle East network.

His sidekick, Olivier Moulierac, grew up in Neuilly-sur-Seine (Hauts-de-Seine) in “A family of the Parisian petty bourgeoisie”, he said. His father runs a small business specializing in advertising. He follows a schooling “Chaotic” before landing an internship at RSCG and being hired while in high school. He will stay there for fifteen years. “We spoke with Mondher, I told him I wanted to become an entrepreneur and we created Momentum and then the Napoleons. “

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“They live in a vacuum. They are not interested in anyone… ”In Arles and Val-d’Isère, the very closed meetings of the Napoleons