Champagne Pol Roger

The Family


The Rogers lived in Aÿ, a village famous for its vineyards, lying at the foot of the Montagne de Reims. Pol Roger was only 18 when, on 2nd January 1849, he made his first sale of wine. Circumstances obliged him to take such an initiative : his father, a notary, contracted an incurable disease and had to give up his practice. The family settled in Épernay in 1851, where the firm would be able to develop. When Pol Roger died of pneumonia in 1899, his two sons were ready to take over from him.

Maurice and Georges Roger took over from their father, Pol. They had worked alongside him since the age of 18. The two brothers' determination enabled the firm to overcome a catastrophe, when in February 1900, the cellars collapsed. In that same year, they obtained the right to change their family name to Pol-Roger, as a tribute to their father. The Pol-Rogers were active participants in viti-vinicultural organisations and other professional associations. In 1912, Maurice was elected Mayor of Épernay. He acted in an exemplary fashion during the German occupation of the town in 1914.

The pair of brothers, Maurice and Georges, proved very successful. Maurice was the "voice" of the firm, taking care of its public relations, sales and marketing. Georges was the "nose", sometimes described as the taster-in-chief, looking after the making of the Champagne. The latter was also in charge of the financial management. The year 1927, with the arrival of Jacques, Maurice's son, heralded the arrival of a third generation in the firm. In the 40s, Odette Pol-Roger, became friends with Winston Churchill.

Georges Pol-Roger passed away in 1950, Maurice in 1959. The third and fourth generations of the family began to run the company. Jacques and Jean were at the controls, assisted by Christian de Billy (Maurice Pol-Roger's grandson). In 1963, Christian Pol-Roger arrived to strengthen this collegial management. The first member of the fifth generation entered the business in 1988 : Hubert de Billy, son of Christian, became Sales Manager for France. Patrice Noyelle, who is not a member of the founding family, joined the management team in 1997.

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