Elisabeth Holder Raberin

Elisabeth Holder Raberin

Co-Owner and President North America | Ladurée

Industry
Restaurant

Location
New York


Elisabeth Holder Raberin: The President of Ladurée on Transitioning the Coveted French Patisserie to Digital and Re-opening with Care

Elisabeth Holder Raberin, President Ladurée North America and Innovation Director is responsible for the iconic artisan French macaron brand’s North American business development, partnerships, and operations alongside her husband, Pierre-Antoine Raberin. Elisabeth has been part owner with her family since the purchase of the brand in 1996. A graduate of the European Business School in Paris, Holder Raberin began her career in luxury and fashion, working with Hermès, Ralph Lauren, and Et Vous, and their European and American markets. In 2004, she joined her family’s business, Groupe Holder, Ladurée’s parent company, as a Brand Director. Holder Raberin relocated to New York City with her family in 2011 to oversee the opening of Ladurée’s first boutique on Madison Avenue. In February 2014, Ladurée SoHo opened its doors, a full-service restaurant and Tea Room that serves as the US Flagship. Ladurée has since expanded to Miami, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. 

What are your biggest business concerns surrounding COVID-19? 

At the moment, my biggest concern is the safety and health of our employees and customers. Additionally, the hospitality industry in general. So many restaurants have already shuttered and I fear many more will in the future.

My philosophy is to take it one day at a time.

These are my colleagues and my greatest hope is that we weather the storm. We closed mid-March in North America (Los Angeles, Miami, Washington DC, and New York) but also our global  operations. On a global scale the losses economically are devastating.  Unfortunately, the future of the economy looks bleak. We are headed into a recession and the duration of it I cannot predict.  We have closed all stores worldwide respecting the rules locally and started a Ladurée Relief Fund for US employees.

Ladurée is famous across the world for its French macarons.

What is your current business strategy for dealing with the situation? 

After the initial shock of what was happening
, we worked quickly to refocus our efforts mainly on e-commerce, launch a Relief Fund for all our US employees, tap into our chefs and create simple cooking videos to share on Instagram, and deliver food to New York City hospitalsfrontline and healthcare professionals that are desperate for help. It’s essential that we support the community. We are all in this together.

Because we are in the food industry, we already have very strict rules about hygiene. Currently, we are working on how to welcome our guests, and make them feel safe and secure in our restaurant and stores, while also continuing to push the digital business.  

An outdoor cafe at the iconic shop.

How do you think things will look in your industry a year from now?

It is hard to say what the hospitality industry will look like in one year. We don’t even know what it will look like next week. Everything is so uncertain. My philosophy is to take it one day at a time. For 
Ladurée, how we do business in the future will change. More e-commerce, virtual cooking classes.   

The Beverly Hills Ladurée cafe.

What have you learned from other difficult times in the past?

The most significant lesson for me is that it is essential to be agile and adapt quickly to manage the difficulties. Teamwork and positivity are also key. During the wars in France, our bakers were helping to provide food to the community. The same applies heresupporting your local community is critical. Unity is a powerful thing.  

Elisabeth Holder Raberin, Co-Owner and President Ladurée North America.

Safe–and entertained–at Home: What business leaders are doing with their downtime

 

Morning routine?
I’m enjoying my new 30-foot commute and use my extra time for yoga or pilates. After, I share my time between home school and calls with Paris in the morning and with the US in the afternoon.

Currently binging? 
I would love to say Miss AmericaSelf Madeand Hollywood, but, in general, I watch the credits and fell asleep.

Currently reading?
I read a range of magazines on food, fashion, and lifestyle…mostly from France. My book right now is the bio of Helena Rubinstein, what an amazing woman! She is the one who invented marketing and communication actually

What are you doing to spend quality time with those you’re sheltering with?
Spending time with my Kids, playing games like the Monopolybut the cheaters version, which I’m much better at—or baking, of course…but simple recipes.

What are you doing to stay healthy mentally and physically? 
Limiting the amount of news I watch/read and the source of that news, practicing almost every day some sport, and catching up with my parents and friends

Where are you dreaming of visiting once things are back to normal?
I just want to see my parents wherever they are and after that, my son asked me a trip to Brazil, which sounds great to me.