18th Apr 2024 – Improving irrigation in southern France

Working recently with SUBTERRA, on behalf of BRL, on another big water project. ... See more

28th Mar 2024 – Medusa Europe/Africa telecom corridor

Great to have accompanied project owner AFR-IX over recent weeks during an... See more

2nd April 2024 – Trenchless workshops

Delighted to have hosted key French project owners on Tuesday for the second edition of OPTIMUM’s... See more

7th Mar 2024 – HDD and marine geothermal energy

Alongside Gendry as the town of La Grande Motte, on the French Mediterranean coast, advances with ... See more

OPTIMUM is an engineering consultancy specializing in the study, consultation and project support for trenchless pipeline and cable laying projects in the oil & gas, electricity, renewables and utilities industries.

In today’s congested and fragile environment, underground energy and utility networks are increasingly being installed using trenchless technology to preserve both the planet as well as existing infrastructure.

Too many projects, however, are still being designed by engineers with insufficient expertise, sometimes leading to technical failures. Thanks to their unparalleled experience in the field, OPTIMUM’s engineers understand trenchless technology perfectly, simplifying project development and minimising risks

Travaux sans tranchée - forage bureau d étude

unparalleled experience on trenchless jobsites

Perfect understanding of all trenchless drilling techniques

Calculation capacity unique in France


trenchless projects abroad

OPTIMUM is ideally placed to help you make the best choices at each step of your project; from its beginnings (outlining the crossing path) through to works completion (on-site operational support), via detailed feasibility studies, choice of the most appropriate trenchless technique, or even development of the purchasing strategy.

HDD Microtunnelling Auger boring Pipe ramming Direct Pipe®

Regardless of the type of network involved (electricity, gas, renewables, fibre optics, water, …) and whatever the length of the pipeline, your trenchless project will be completed on time and on budget.

We truly listen to our customers, their needs and their constraints, throughout their trenchless project. OPTIMUM adds value, is relevant, impartial and technically insightful in every mission.

We guarantee operational excellence at every level and keep up to date with technological advances by being present at major international trade fairs and conferences such as NO-DIG. Recognized in the industry thanks to the expertise of its engineers, OPTIMUM is also an active and valued member of key French and pan-European trade groups, such as the DCA, FSTT, …

François Gandard and Alexandre Cambier created the company in 2018 to offer new skills and to modernise the engineering offer in a specialized sector that was poorly represented on the French market.

François Gandard

François graduated in civil and geotechnical engineering from the École Polytechnique de Lille, France, and McGill University in Montreal, Canada, before beginning his career in trenchless technologies in 1998 at S.R.B.G. (Groupe Jean Lefebvre).

From there, he joined the trenchless ( HDD ) market leader Horizontal Drilling International (HDI Entrepose), where he successively held the positions of Project Leader, Design Office Manager, Project Director and finally Head of French Operations.

forage bureau d étude -Travaux sans tranchée
Travaux sans tranchée -

Alexandre Cambier

After graduating in mechanical engineering from the École des Hautes Etudes d’Ingénieur in Lille, Alexandre began working for the French market leader, Horizontal Drilling International (HDI Entrepose), as International Project Manager.

In 2014 and 2015, he piloted two record-breaking underground electrical installations in France and following this, thanks to his solid field experience, Alexandre developed the position of Design Office Manager across all markets, both in France and internationally.

12th May 2020 – France / UK interconnection

As part of RTE’s French-UK interconnection project, the dual trenchless crossing in Frénouville is now finished. Both of the 140 metre-long, 10 metre-deep HDD crossings, passing under one of Normandy’s busiest rail routes, required precision control at every stage. OPTIMUM assigned specialist engineers from the document validation phase through to works completion, ensuring round the clock monitoring on site, day and night. Finalised in April 2020, the project was not only completed on time and in compliance with strict SNCF requirements, but also whilst preserving the health and safety of the dedicated engineers who worked despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

5th February 2020 – Rail crossing in Normandy

Drilling 20m below the busiest railway in Normandy calls for the highest levels of vigilance and expertise. By accompanying RTE’s trenchless project in Harfleur on a daily basis and assisting drilling operations around the clock, OPTIMUM ensured the railway network was preserved throughout. The enhanced security mechanisms put in place (including continuous monitoring of the rail platform, topographic controls before, during and after drilling), coupled with the expertise of the dedicated project engineers enabled this curved,260m long HDD crossing to be drilled on time, despite adverse geotechnical conditions.
The crossing is now complete; a great challenge, successfully met.

20th December 2019 – G3 Missions

Contracting authorities are increasingly aware of the importance of geotechnical issues in trenchless projects, leading to an more G3 Missions. As such, OPTIMUM is expanding its offer to assist drilling contractors in controlling geotechnical risks and identifying possible deviations during drilling operations. Its most recent G3 contract will contribute to the extension of the hydraulic network in the Languedoc, south-west France in early 2020.

5th November 2019 – 30th SNCF railway crossing

This week OPTIMUM will finalize its 30th railway crossing project. These must not only integrate a “classic” trenchless study but also adhere to the strict SNCF criteria necessary for drilling authorization. They enable the complexity and the multiple risks inherent in working under railway lines to be managed proactively and effectively. Subsequently, OPTIMUM is also able to monitor and control the drilling operations, in line with the SNCF stipulation that this be delegated by the contracting authority to an independent, specialist project manager.

11th Oct 2019 – Dual pipeline crossing at Cubzac

The dual gas pipeline crossing of the Dordogne at Cubzac is complete. By reworking the project engineering and assisting technical operations on a daily basis, OPTIMUM managed to halve both the drilling costs and the project timeframe. We are proud to have been able to support Coquart & Fils in this great achievement, now its longest ever directional drilling project (2x850m). Great teamwork !

3rd Oct 2019 – Ovale & Sens sponsorship

Sponsorship choices speak volumes about a company’s ethics. As the Rugby World Cup continues in Japan, OPTIMUM is delighted to announce its sponsorship of Ovale & Sens, a rugby club near Paris open to teenagers and adults, men and women alike, with mental health issues. Runners up in the French adapted rugby championship in 2017-2018 and winner of the Ile-de-France shield during the 2018-2019 season, the team never ceases to amaze us. Bravo !

17th August 2019 – Landfall expertise expands overseas

OPTIMUM broadens its international scope with an AMO contract in Portugal. The landfall project, with over 600 m of horizontal directional drilling (HDD), will link an offshore wind farm to the Portuguese coast.
This mission further highlights OPTIMUM’s landfall expertise after other missions in France, Italy, Romania and the Reunion Island.

19th June 2019 – OPTIMUM at VST 2019

How to predict the resurgence of drilling fluids ?

6th June 2019 – Ingénierie Territoriale

The trenchless technology focus dossier in this month’s edition of Ingénierie Territoriale reinforces the relevance of these techniques in today’s congested environment. Good preparation is the key to success.