On September 7, 2020, the Cristallerie de Baccarat was placed under judicial administration.
Baccarat has been at the center of a dispute for several months between its controlling shareholders and their creditors.
It should be recalled that on March 31, its Managing Director Daniela Riccardi left her position.
Its sales had plummeted with the Covid-19 crisis and its Social and Economic Committee (CSE) considered that the company resembled “a ship without a rudder”.
It also denounced “the violation of the commitments made at the time of the acquisition”.
A situation so explosive that the Commercial Court of Nancy (France) has just entrusted the reins of the company to provisional administrators.
According to the Commercial Court, Baccarat is “almost totally unable to appoint a new managing director”, a situation likely to block production.
Furthermore, it considers that the company “risks finding itself in a perilous floating situation that could cause it to lose the confidence of its commercial partners and lead to a fall in its share price”.
Appointed for an indefinite period, Frédéric Abitbol and Christophe Gelis will have to “establish an independent diagnosis of the financial situation, the legal situation and the ownership of the capital” before convening the Baccarat shareholders’ meeting, initially scheduled for September 17, 2020.
However, this date has finally been postponed and the Commercial Court is expecting their first report within four months.
Its creditors accuse FCC, the Chinese investment company that bought 97.1% of Baccarat for 185 million euros in mid-2018, of not having invested in developing the brand.
A shareholder that seems to have completely lost interest in the activities of the Lorraine manufacturer, which has more than 500 employees.
Following a default in payments, they obtained the appointment of a director of an FCC holding company in the spring, allowing them to have a say in Baccarat.
The company also refused to put their resolutions proposing the appointment of three directors on the agenda of the shareholders’ meeting, prompting them to refer the matter to the Commercial Court.
The Minister Delegate for Industry, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, guest of France Bleu Sud Lorraine radio this morning, wants to reassure the employees of Baccarat crystal and has indicated that the government is closely following the case and is seeking to find new shareholders.
Featured photo: © Baccarat
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