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 television.

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.

Honours and awards