Joseph Lagesse, owner and Mauritius businessman (1892-1971)
In 1939, Joseph Lagesse makes his first investment by buying the Mon Loisir sugar estate, and then, in 1945, the sugar refinery of Beau Séjour. He is actively involved in the development of the Mauritius Sugar Industry, and manages to place it at the forefront of success in its production methods.
A visionary, passionate about progress, he innovates in 1952 with the acquisition of Caterpillar’s most powerful bulldozer, which made it possible to extract lava rock from the Plaine des Roches for planting sugar cane. He thus manages to put under cultivation thousands of acres of sugar cane. A bet won against the advice of the experts.
In terms of research, he is actively involved in establishing the Mauritius Sugar Industry Research Institute (MSRI), the research institute dedicated to growing sugar cane in Mauritius and the region.
An entrepreneur at heart, he diversifies his investments outside the agricultural sector, accompanying the economic development in the years after the war. Thus he engages in other sectors of business activity, such as printing, construction, trade or the soft drink industry.
Joseph Lagesse, a man of discreet and generous personality, was a respected entrepreneur who shaped the economic landscape of Mauritius.