Francis Bourgeois, the U.K.’s trainspotting sensation, has found representation, Variety can reveal.
The beloved TikTok talent, whose unbridled joy for the country’s railway system has garnered a global fanbase, has signed with international talent management company YMU’s Books division, which will represent him globally. He was signed by Millie Lean who will manage Bourgeois.
Bourgeois — whose real name is Luke Nicolson — frequents railway stations around the country, and records his jubilant reactions at the arrival of trains using a GoPro. With 2 million TikTok followers and 1.1 million Instagram followers, he’s achieved cult status on both platforms, becoming one of the U.K.’s best known digital creators. The 20-year-old presenter’s authenticity was called into question late last year when old school photos emerged of Bourgeois sporting a crew cut and “roadman” clothes; however, he’s since explained that he was trying to fit in at a new school, and has reclaimed his “love for train through [his] videos.”
With YMU, Bourgeois is looking to expand into books, broadcast and podcasting, music and live events, both in the U.K. and overseas. He will also work with YMU’s newly launched Social division.
“I am so excited to be joining YMU,” said Bourgeois. “Everyone I have met at YMU has been smiley, warm and welcoming. I am really looking forward to exploring new avenues whilst continuing my trainspotting videos with the goal of elevating the world of trains and engineering, as well as spreading happiness and joy in general!”
Lean added: “I’m delighted to welcome Francis Bourgeois to YMU. He’s quickly established his innovative digital content as a ray of sunshine on social media, where he spreads pure, unadulterated joy through his love of trains. We look forward to collaborating with him on projects in exciting new areas.”
Amanda Harris, head of YMU Books, described Bourgeois as “joy personified.”
“His content is original and refreshing and unique and, as The Times agrees, everyone needs more Francis Bourgeois in their lives,” continued Harris. “We look forward to working closely with Francis to support and amplify his core message of joy, while losing none of the magic that has touched his millions of dedicated fans across the globe.”
Founded in 1984, YMU has offices in Los Angeles, London, Washington, New York and Manchester. Its client roster includes the likes of Take That, Steve Aoki, Ant and Dec and Fearne Cotton, among others.