Portrait of the Founding Family
André Chagnon, the son of a wealthy contractor-electrician, was
born in Montreal in 1928. Following in the footsteps of his father,
in 1959, at the age of 31, he started an electrical service
company, E.R. Chagnon et Fils Ltée. Seven years
later, he sold his company to focus his energies on cable
In 1964, he founded Vidéotron, a regional cable television
company that, under his leadership, would become the third largest
telecommunications company in Canada, and the market leader in
Quebec through an acquisition-based growth strategy.
In 1986, Le Groupe Vidéotron acquired a majority stake in
Télé-Métropole. In 1988, the company set up in the London area
(U.K.), and entered the US market in 1993.
André Chagnon and Le Groupe Vidéotron were internationally
renowned for their innovative approach and particularly for the
multimedia system Vidéoway, marketed in Canada, the U.K. and the
United States. In 1995, André Chagnon was named to the Information
Highway Advisory Council. He was also one of the four industrial
leaders invited by the Canadian government to participate in the
G-7 Ministerial Conference on the Information Society, held in
Brussels in 1995.
The end of a long journey:
the creation of the Foundation
In 2000, Quebecor Media Inc. acquired Le Groupe Vidéotron and
its regulated cable television subsidiaries. After a 37-year
career, André Chagnon gave up the reins at Le Groupe Vidéotron. He
and his wife Lucie, along with their five children (Johanne,
Claude, Christian, Élaine and Isabelle) decided to
devote their time and efforts to setting up the Lucie and André
Chagnon Foundation, which is currently the largest private
foundation in Canada.
The Foundation's mission is to help foster and improve health
through the prevention of poverty and disease, focusing primarily
on parents and children in order to promote the educational success
of young Quebecers.
In 2000, the Chagnon family contributed $1.4 billion to the
Foundation in order to carry out joint, long-term social projects
aimed at promoting optimal early childhood development (from
conception to age 17) and healthy lifestyles.