Fauchon, which has 15 stores and restaurants in the Middle East, hoped that the move would strengthen the brand
France luxury grocer Fauchon, famous for exquisite chocolates and fine teas, has asked for its core Paris operations to be placed into administration after sales were hit by the coronavirus epidemic, it said Tuesday.
The company said it had asked a court to "to start a procedure of placing into administration" its Paris shops and headquarters.
It said sales had been "badly impacted" not just by the months-long closure of stores amid the coronavirus lockdown but also the effects of the yellow vest protests of 2018-2019 and strikes over pension reforms this winter.
As a result, operating costs at the Paris shops had become "unsustainable", a statement said.
Its main outlets on Place de la Madeleine in central Paris, where Fauchon opened in the late nineteenth century, is usually a magnet for well-heeled tourists from around the world.
Also affected by the administration request are two shops on Place de la Madeleine, a tea store and the headquarters which employ 130 people, a company spokesperson told AFP.
"This restructuring is an essential step in the reorganisation of the company and preserving its equilibrium," a management statement said.
"This is the most suitable solution to deal with the situation of financial deficit, especially in the stores on Place de la Madeleine," it added.
It expressed hope that the move would strengthen the Fauchon brand which has 73 stores and restaurants worldwide, including 30 in Japan, 20 in France, and 15 in the Middle East.