Corporate governance

Board of Directors, Committees and Strategic Committee of Colas

01 Board of Directors

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors meets five times a year to conduct ordinary business:

  • In January, to review the three-year business plan
  • In February, to approve the financial statements for the previous year
  • In August, to examine financial statements and business activity for the first half-year and assess projected full-year results and activity
  • In May and November, to review performance indicators and interim results

Composition of the Board of Directors

 Colas’ Board of Directors comprises eight directors:

  • Frédéric Gardès, Chairman and CEO
  • Olivier Bouygues 
  • Martine Gavelle
  • Colette Lewiner
  • Bouygues SA, whose permanent representative is Pascal Grangé
  • Catherine Ronge
  • Olivier Roussat
  • Arnauld Van Eeckhout.

02 Committees


The Board is assisted in its duties by an Audit Committee, a Selection and Compensation Committee and an Ethics and Corporate Patronage Committee.

Audit Committee 

The Audit Committee meets four times a year to examine the consolidated and company financial statements prior to Board meetings. Its role is to help the Board ensure that financial statements are accurate, reliable and present a true and fair view of the Group, and that the information provided to shareholders is of high quality.

Its members are:

  • Bouygues SA, whose permanent representative is Pascal Grangé, Chairman
  • Colette Lewiner
  • Catherine Ronge

Selection and Compensation Committee

The Selection and Compensation Committee makes recommendations to the Board on the Chairman and CEO’s compensation and benefits, and periodically examines questions about the Board’s composition, organization and functioning and makes recommendation pertaining thereto.  

Its members are:

  • Colette Lewiner, Chairwoman
  • Arnauld Van Eeckhout 

Ethics and Corporate Patronage Committee

The Ethics Committee examines alerts and situations that could indicate or entail ethics risk and actions to be undertaken pertaining thereto, as well as all Corporate Patronage contracts for amounts exceeding €20,000.

Its members are:

  • Arnauld Van Eeckhout, Chairman
  • Martine Gavelle
  • Colette Lewiner

03 Organisation

04 Strategic Committee

Frédéric Gardès, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

Born April 25, 1971

After graduating from the Ecole Centrale de Paris and the Royal Institute of Technology of Stockholm, Frédéric Gardès, began his career in 1994 within the Bouygues group as a Construction Engineer at Bouygues Offshore. From 2002 to 2011, he moved on to Saipem in management positions on major international projects. In 2011, he joined Colas as Director of GTOI, a Colas Reunion Island subsidiary. He took the lead of the Indian Ocean Regional Management Division in 2013 and was then tapped to become Deputy General Manager Northern Europe and Middle East in 2015. In 2018, he was appointed Managing Director, International (excluding the Americas), Major Projects and Networks. On May 14, 2019, Frédéric Gardès became Chief Executive Officer of Colas and since February 16, 2021, Chairman of the Board of Directors. 

Eric Haentjens, General Secretary

Born on October 28, 1960

After graduating from ESME SUDRIA engineering school and the IAE School of Management, Eric Haentjens began his career at Bouygues in 1985 as an Administrative Supervisor. In 1987, he moved on to a position as Controller at CIPEL/Wonder, before returning to Bouygues Construction in 1989 as Head of Finance Administration for the Housing branch. Mr. Haentjens served as General Secretary at Screg Batiment, then Deputy Treasury Manager at Bouygues. In 1997, he joined Bouygues Telecom as Finance Manager, then Strategy Manager from 2002 to 2007. In 2007, he was appointed Finance Director, and became a member of the Executive Committee, then Deputy Managing Director in charge of Finance, HR and Strategy, and member of the Strategic Committee in 2012. Eric Haentjens joined Colas on October 1, 2016 as Deputy General Secretary. He was appointed General Secretary of the Colas Group on May 2, 2017.

Thierry Méline, Managing Director France & Indian Ocean

Born July 17, 1964

After graduating with a degree in Engineering from Ensam, Thierry Méline began his career in the Colas Group in 1990 as a Construction Engineer at Screg Sud-Est (now Colas Midi-Méditerranée). He moved on to become Assistant Head of Operations in the same subsidiary’s Toulon branch office in 1994, followed by a position as Profit Center Supervisor in Saint-Etienne in 1997, Avignon in 2000, and then Isère / Drôme / Ardèche in 2001. In 2005, he was called on to be Profit Center Manager at Colas Midi-Méditerranée’s Côte d’Azur branch, before taking over as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the subsidiary in 2010.  As of January 2015, Thierry Méline was appointed Deputy Managing Director at Colas’ Roads France General Management division. He has been appointed Colas’ Managing Director France in September 2015. In May 2019, his scope is expanded to include the Indian Ocean. 

Amelia Irion, Group Human Resources Director

Amelia Irion joined Colas in November 2020 after a 22-year international career in HR at Schlumberger. She began working for the global energy services and equipment group in the United States in 1998, and subsequently embarked upon an international path spanning various HR leadership roles in research, technology, manufacturing, field operations across Europe and the US. From 2009 to 2013, Amelia Irion was Human Resources Director of Schlumberger’s R&D operations, before moving on to HR management positions in operational branches. In 2019, she was appointed head of global HR services.

Amelia Irion is a graduate of Scripps College, Ecole Normale Supérieure d’Ulm and New York University.

Francis Grass, Managing Director EMEA, Rail / Water and Energy Transport

Born on November 22, 1970.

A graduate of the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts et Industries (ENSAIS), Francis GRASS, aged 50, joined Colas in 1993 as a trainee at Colas Martinique before becoming Site Manager (1994) then Works Supervisor (1996) at Colas Gabon. In 1999, he joined the Ribal Group (Colas Guyana) as Works Engineer before being promoted to Manager in 2000. Seven years later, Francis GRASS was Development Manager in the Central Europe Division of Colas, then Construction Manager and Deputy Project Manager for the construction of the M6-M60 freeway in Hungary. In 2010, he was appointed Regional Manager of Colas in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, before becoming CEO of Colas Centre-Ouest (2012). In 2017, he was appointed CEO of Colas Rail and then became Managing Director EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa), Rail / Water and Energy Transport in 2020. He also remains Chairman of Colas Rail.