On sale! The French company of resistant smartphones and tablets Crosscall would be on sale! At least that’s the surprising information published at the beginning of the week by the informant following the interview that the founder of a company based in Aix-en-Provence, Cyril Vidal, had granted him. In order to parry this announcement or at least regain control of its communication, Crosscall has accelerated the release of a press release, where it is not a question of sale but rather of appointment. Cyril Vidal “thus passes the baton of his executive functions to Nicolas Zibell, member of the Supervisory Board of Crosscall”.
An effective experience in telephony
The new CEO of Crosscall already has experience in the world of telephony: director in China of TCL Communication / Alcatel, commercial director at the satellite Internet operator Oneweb based in London, Nicolas Zibell was also the business director of the Hong Kong KaiOS, a company developing an Internet access platform for physical keyboard phones, devices still used around the world. According to Cyril Vidal, the new manager would be the “international specialist in the telecommunications sector” that the French company needs to take a higher step in its development.
Because Crosscall’s ambition is great and multifaceted. The company had already announced several months ago that it wanted to manufacture its own smartphones in Europe in 2024, a bold industrial bet when we know that most mobiles are born in China … In addition to the fear of continuing to depend on this country, especially after the shortage of electronic components that occurred from the confinement of 2020, there is also at Crosscall a desire displayed, or at least a message expressed for several years, to make the manufacture of mobiles less impacting on the environment, first by pushing the smartphone warranty from the mandatory two years to three and then five years more recently . Manufacturing its products in Europe, due to a shorter route, would also participate in this environmental effort.
But Crosscall also has a financial logic that would accompany the need of Western states to ensure more security in the communication exchanges necessary for various professions, from law enforcement agencies to rescue teams such as emergency workers or firefighters. Not content with manufacturing terminals resistant to shocks, drops, extreme temperatures and immersion in various liquids, in short, the conditions that these professionals encounter, the company therefore also wants to become a leader in “critical communication”, and this by taking advantage of the development of PMR (“Professional Mobile Radio”), independent mobile networks.
Selected three times, in 2020, 2022 and 2023, in the French Tech 120 list of French companies that the state and its administrations support, Crosscall, created in 2009, has won several tenders in recent years, including that of SNCF. And that of the Ministry of the Interior which has resulted in equipping police and gendarmes with 230,000 terminals… Its turnover in 2022 is more than 126 million euros. The goal, among other things, of Crosscall: to also win this type of orders in Europe and elsewhere.
“Today we want to partner with renowned partners who will be able to help us
support in our development ambitions”, argues in the press release Cyril Vidal, the official and current majority shareholder of Crosscall, “the only telephony company with 100% French capital”. There is no more precision on the scale of this “capital opening”. If not the desire to look for “European industrial and financial” partners. What role will the founder of Crosscall play from now on? The company should not be long in announcing a new product. Will it be the first made in Europe?