Compagnie des Moluques
Established in 1615 by following a merger of the Compagnie de Le Roy et Godefroy and and a new company proposed by two Rouenais investors, Jacques Muisson and Ezéchéel Cahen, the Moluccas Company (Compagnie des Moluques) is chartered by the queen regent, Marie de’ Medici for trade with the Far East for a period of eighteen years. Le Roy and Godefrey, two merchants from Dieppe, received their initial charter in 1604, but due to disputes with the Dutch, they failed to mount a successful trade mission despite owning four armed ships.
In 1616 the company launches a total of five ships in two expeditions to trade in the Far East. The Dutch East India Company (VOC) confiscates or sinks two of the five, but the three remaining ships return to France and earn a profit for their investors.
In 1619 the Moluccas Company joins with Malouin merchants to mount another expedition. Three ships under command of Augustin Beaulieu depart for the Far East. Beaulieu attempts to establish a factory in Indonesia, but the Dutch force the French to abandon the operation. Despite losing two of his three ships, Beaulieu returns to France in 1622 and the cargo earns a healthy profit for the investors.
The company has not mounted another trading mission since Beaulieu’s return.