Inter-cultural human relations
Philippe Oulhen was born in 1967 in Roscoff, northern Finistère (France) to a family of wholesale fish merchants. His grandfather got him into sailing from the age of 2. After spending 8 years in Morocco, the family settled in Canada in 1984. At 21, he formed part of the Canadian Tornado team, which enabled him to race along the American and Canadian coasts for several years, where he began to establish his vast network of contacts.
He studied computing at the Université of Montréal. These languages are no longer in current use today, but they do enable him to structure his approach and pursue the evolution of digital technology in the world of yacht racing.
From sports practice to market development.
His encounter with the Canadian Gerry Roufs gave him the opportunity to sail with Francis Joyon and Mike Birch, with whom he raced on the ORMA 60 circuit as navigator for the Tours de l’Europe in 1993 (Banque Populaire) and 1995 (La Trinitaine).
In 1987, Philippe crossed paths with the New Canadian, Bruno Dubois, with whom he began to race and work in a sail loft. After 7 years working for North Sails as a dealer for the province of Quebec, he teamed up with Bruno Dubois again in the North Sails France adventure as Commercial Manager. Philippe continued to race with clients, but his main focus was the development of the sail loft and its markets, even extending to the development of dhow sails in the United Arab Emirates.
He first met Juan K back in 2003 during the delivery of sails for the KOD33 and, some 10 years later, the Argentinian architect offered him the chance to join JYD to assist him with structuring the office and taking charge of the business development.
Listening and communicating.
In this way, he went on to become Commercial & Marketing Manager of the structure in 2014.
Curious to discover fresh ideas and their origins, Philippe has always been drawn to the genesis of an architectural project. Relishing human contact, he plays a rigorous and interactive part in managing client relations in order to draw up clear specifications: it remains a crucial stage before the design office begins to work on and transform the objective into reality.
Philippe’s interpersonal skills are simply excellent: he always remains very close to and in touch with his clients. He also collaborates very closely with Nautor’s Swan as Product Line Leader for the whole “Club Swan” range.
Juan K: “Philippe arrived at a point where we needed to restructure the firm. With his rigour, his patience, his vast experience, his flawless method and his interpersonal skills, he has managed to inject a great vibe into the team.”