🏡 City: Paris

💼 Job title: Chief Financial Officer

🎓 Studies: Ecole Centrale de Lille 

🔮 Languages: French 🇫🇷 and English 🇬🇧

👣 How do you commute to work? I usually bike to the office

🧳 Travel dreams: Somewhere there’s turquoise-blue water like the Maldives or Seychelles🏝

🎬 Favorite film: American Beauty by Sam Mendes

📌 What is your best memory at Stuart so far?

What I love most is to be able to watch my team grow and have the best time while working! Just before the pandemic we had a two-day Finance Department off-site, which was definitely a highlight. We worked on team-building and reflected on what our next steps were at Stuart, all the while bonding and growing even stronger as a team. But the last 5 years at Stuart are full of great memories: I have worked with and met amazing people, and looking at what we have accomplished makes me proud.

📌 What are the biggest challenges of being a CFO?

The job of CFO at Stuart is at a crossroads between two worlds. On one side, there’s a scaleup side where everything goes very fast, everyone has a lot of ideas and the rhythm is crazy! On the other side, as the finance team of a subsidiary of a big group we need to reach a top level of excellence in everything we are doing and delivering. Reconciling these two worlds is hard but very exciting, since it pushes us to improve ourselves constantly and not be satisfied with low or medium-quality work. We also need to always keep long-term objectives in mind. 

What also proved to be a real challenge was to create a department from scratch, to structure a team in a moving, changing environment and to be able to plan ahead for any possible issue. It was a challenge but a thrilling one!

📌 What’s the most exciting part of your job?

When joining Stuart, the opportunity to quickly manage significant projects very early and to handle senior tasks happens quite fast. But to do so, you have to get to a certain level of excellence right away. This allows each of us, in the best way possible, to challenge ourselves and push our limits to become the person we didn’t know we could be.

Being part of a red-hot space such as last-mile delivery is really exciting. Even if this area has existed for a long time, it’s moving so fast that we constantly have to redefine the objectives we need to reach (financial, KPIs, etc) and to track them closely. This is also a job where every cent counts, so it makes the Finance Department an essential business partner: we’re responsible for translating these objectives into budgets and monitoring the achievement of these targets with accuracy.

📌 What’s the best professional advice you’ve been given so far?

If there’s one thing I always keep in mind, it’s to “Take your time, don't rush ahead”. A previous manager once told me that in the market, there’s a premium for loyalty! My feeling is that sometimes people want to change jobs and move on to other things too quickly. I strongly believe that time is essential and that a career is built up over time. Moving from job to job every two to three years might be insignificant in a 40+ year career. That's what I try to pass on to my teams.

📌 What’s your personal mantra?

I'm much more laid-back in my personal life than I am in my work. I will say that I try to appreciate the little things and enjoy the present moment. 

That's something I feel a lot about being at Stuart too—we're very lucky to be where we are and I think we have to appreciate the good times.

📌 Would you rather be John Travolta in Pulp Fiction or Saturday Night Fever and why?

Without any hesitation, John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever. Because I love music and dancing, and I'm definitely more of a dancer than a hitman. I love Travolta in Pulp Fiction—which I recently rewatched—but the dark black suit is not my style!

Stuart CFO Jonathan Sarfati in a formal suit

📌 If you could watch one soccer game over again, which one would you choose?

Very easy. It would be Paris vs. Barcelona, 4-0, February 2017! I think it’s the only football game I've seen more than once. I don’t usually rewatch football games because nowadays you know the final score the minute the match is over, but this one holds a special place for me. I must have seen it 4 or 5 times. Unfortunately the return game was a disaster, and to be honest I haven’t watched the first leg since then!

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